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Pa. auditor general continues targeting waste

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

With the incoming administration open to his ideas, Pennsylvania Auditor General Jack Wagner is laying out ways he thinks the state can save money and bridge a likely multibillion-dollar deficit next year.

Governor-elect Tom Corbett is a Republican and Wagner is a Democrat, but again and again during the campaign, Corbett said he’d look at Wagner’s audits for ways to save money.

The auditor general said Tuesday he believes the Department of Public Welfare is wasting 15 percent of the monthly payments it makes to health-care providers on behalf of Medicaid patients by using out-of-date information.

“If, in fact, their status changes and there’s no notification or use of data to update the change in status, the managed care organization continues to receive the monthly payment for months or for years,” Wagner said.

Wagner said DPW typically only updates information once a year. He said relevant data can be refreshed quarterly or even monthly.

The auditor general said a 10 percent reduction in Medicaid payments could save more than $400 million.

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