Audit finds Missouri Medicaid oversight lacking

Monday, April 27, 2009 | 12:04 p.m. CDT

JEFFERSON CITY — An audit says Missouri is not doing it all it could to track and prevent wasteful spending by Medicaid health care providers.

The state audit says the Program Integrity Unit in the Department of Social Services lacks the staff and budget necessary to conduct reviews promptly. It also faulted the unit for not having a tracking process to evaluate if follow-up reviews are occurring.

In a written response, the department said it has requested funding for more staff and has implemented a system to better track its cases.

The audit noted one case in 2004 in which the state approved a Medicaid provider that was on a federal disqualification list because of a fraud conviction. The provider was paid $669,000 by Missouri before removed from the program in 2006.

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