Your friendly elderly neighbor could be an anti-fraud agent.
More Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP) members and Medicare beneficiaries participated in anti-fraud education in 2011 than in 2010, according to a June OIG report.
In 2011, SMP had a 14-percent increase in the number of volunteers over the year before, bringing the total to almost 5,700. The SMP saw a 45-percent increase in the number of Medicare beneficiaries who attended group education sessions, from 298,097 in 2010 to 431,128 in 2011, the report states.
SMP efforts recovered $19,283 in Medicare funds in 2011, and cost avoidance totaled $247,850. SMP members also reported two “large-dollar cases” to contractors. In one case, the Medicare contractor is seeking to recover $2.9 million in overpayments from a provider, the OIG report states.
Those numbers could grow. The report showed 39 states, the District of Columbia, Guam and the Virgin Islands referred other cases for further action. Georgia referred cases involving more than $4 million for further action, while California, Delaware, Michigan, Nebraska, New Mexico, Texas and Utah referred cases totaling at least $100,000 each.