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AARP Endorses Legislation to Crack Down on Medicare and Medicaid Fraud

  • Published: 2011-06-28 : Author: AARP
  • Synopsis: AARP announces its endorsement of new legislation to crack down on fraud in Medicare and Medicaid.

AARP announces its endorsement of new legislation to crack down on fraud in Medicare and Medicaid.

The bipartisan Medicare and Medicaid Fighting Fraud and Abuse to Save Taxpayers' Dollars Act, sponsored by Sens. Thomas Carper (D-DE) and Tom Coburn (R-OK), would help seniors detect and report fraud, curb identity theft and increase penalties for health care fraud.

"We can crack down on the fraud, waste and abuse that drive up health care costs and leave seniors vulnerable to identity theft," said Joyce Rogers, AARP's Senior Vice President for Government Affairs. "Fraud is costly not only to people in Medicare and Medicaid, but it drives up costs for all taxpayers."

The legislation would strengthen the Senior Medicare Patrol, making it easier for seniors to fight fraud.

It would also remove Social Security numbers from newly issued Medicare cards - a practice that today leaves seniors vulnerable to identity theft.

Finally, the bill would improve data sharing between government agencies to better detect fraud in real time and would increase penalties for the illegal distribution of Medicare and Medicaid patient and provider information.

Rogers added:

"We look forward to working with these lawmakers and their colleagues on both sides of the aisle to move this important bill forward. As Congress works to address the country's finances, lawmakers must strengthen Medicare while protecting seniors from harmful cuts."

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