Re-elect Dan Lipinski Congressman

Lipinski Calls on Federal Agency to Reverse Decision Preventing Bipartisan Medicaid Reforms that Will Save Taxpayer Dollars (July 18, 2011)

07/18/2011

 
Today, Congressman Dan Lipinski (IL-3) called on the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to reconsider its decision to prevent implementation of bipartisan Illinois reforms that would stop Medicaid fraud. These reforms would save taxpayer dollars and strengthen Medicaid by ensuring only eligible individuals are accepted into the program.

“At a time when everyone is searching for ways to reduce budget deficits, preventing Medicaid fraud is something we should all be able to agree on,” Congressman Lipinski said. “These reforms passed the Illinois General Assembly with overwhelming support from members of both parties and were signed by Gov. Pat Quinn. They represent a commonsense approach to stopping fraud without erecting unfair barriers to access for those in need of help. CMS should reconsider its decision and help Illinois to save taxpayer money and ensure Medicaid’s financial viability going forward.”

At issue is an Illinois law that would require Medicaid beneficiaries to prove they meet existing income requirements with a full month’s paystub and to provide documentation, such as a utility bill, showing they are state residents. CMS determined that under the health care law passed by Congress last year, these measures are prohibited because they would restrict eligibility. But the reforms clearly would not change eligibility requirements, only assure that existing requirements are adhered to. As Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services Director Julie Hamos stated in a letter to CMS, “It is the state’s intention to ensure program integrity, not to make it more difficult to become eligible for the programs.”

“The decision by CMS to prevent wise reforms is yet another unfortunate consequence of the deeply flawed health care law, which I voted against last year,” Congressman Lipinski said. “Nevertheless, I believe it is within the agency’s powers to correct its ruling and help Illinois to take a major step toward preventing unnecessary spending while ensuring that we can continue to provide needed health care for some of our state’s most vulnerable residents, including the many seniors and disabled individuals who depend on Medicaid.”

(July 18, 2011)

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