KANSAS CITY, KAN. ----- The Kansas attorney general’s office recovered more than $28 million in taxpayer funds through its Medicaid fraud enforcement during the recently ended state fiscal year, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt said today.
“The Medicaid program is intended to help care for Kansans in need, not to pay for fraudulent claims or services not provided,” Schmidt said. “Our office continues to take seriously our responsibility to protect taxpayers’ money from being misspent by vigorously prosecuting those providers who try to illegally enrich themselves from the public treasury.”
During state fiscal year 2014, which ended June 30, the Medicaid Fraud and Abuse Division of Schmidt’s office recovered more than $28.7 million on behalf of taxpayers. The recoveries were reported in the Division’s annual report to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which was filed yesterday. The report is available online at http://1.usa.gov/1nPafEy.
This was the second-highest year of recoveries on record, following last fiscal year’s record-setting $33.7 million. Since Schmidt took office in 2011, the office has recovered more than $94 million through its Medicaid fraud recovery efforts.
In addition to the financial recoveries, the report also highlighted the successful efforts of Schmidt’s office this year to strengthen the state’s Medicaid fraud and elder abuse laws. Earlier this year, the Kansas Legislature passed two proposals supported by the attorney general. The first strengthened the penalties for Medicaid fraud, allowing for possible prison sentences for those who steal from taxpayers. The second proposal created a new crime of “mistreatment of an elder person,” which will allow the state to better prosecute those who financially abuse senior citizens through misuse of a trust or power of attorney.
In the past year, Schmidt’s office also launched a new online Medicaid fraud reporting form, which allows Kansas citizens to submit online tips if they believe Medicaid fraud or abuse is occurring. Anyone with information about Medicaid fraud should report it on that form on the attorney general’s website at www.ag.ks.gov or by calling (866) 551-6328.