LePage: Federal auditors to look into DHHS Medicaid payments

6:19 PM, Mar 18, 2011   |    comments
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AUGUSTA, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Governor Paul LePage's office says Federal auditors are coming to Maine to review Medicaid payments for school-based services from 2006-2008.

The payments totaled $138.9 million.

LePage's office says Maine Department of Health and Human Services Commissioner Mary Mayhew recently learned that auditors from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General will conduct the audit. Maine DHHS officials say the notice of audit was not shared with them by the previous leadership of the department.

"The outgoing leadership at the Department of Health and Human Services failed to share information that my team needed to make budget decisions," said Governor LePage.

A state auditor is also looking into nearly $12 million in adjustments to claims that take advantage of higher Federal medical assistance rates. LePage's office says DHHS often has to make adjustments to MaineCare claims. The auditor is questioning the practice of processing these adjustments at higher federal match rates than those that were in place when the original claim was processed. If the auditor's concerns are affirmed, DHHS may have overbilled the federal government by several million dollars.

DHHS Commissioner Mary Mayhew said, "We are committed to a comprehensive analysis of the Department's finances to ensure that our limited state resources are spent appropriately and most importantly are focused on the direct care needs of the most vulnerable people in Maine. To move forward we must first resolve these problems from the past and get our financial house in order."


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