Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, a senior member of the Florida Congressional Delegation, testified this morning of Tuesday, June 15th before the House Ways & Means Committee on legislation she and her South Florida colleague, Ron Klein, introduced to combat Medicare fraud. South Florida is the epicenter of Medicare fraud and Ros-Lehtinen believes the adoption of this bill will go a long way into assuring that law enforcement authorities have the tools necessary to fight this scourge, which, if not dealt with, will seriously hamper Medicare's ability to pay out future claims.
The Medicare Fraud Enforcement and Prevention Act will provide badly needed reform to the Medicare system. Congresswoman Ros-Lehtinen's testimony focused on two aspects of the bill. In many cases of fraud, the corporate officers who were complicit in the crimes committed simply change companies and continue billing fraudulent claims. The Ros-Lehtinen/Klein legislation would exclude all persons who engaged in fraud.
The other part of the bill would create a pilot program that implements biometric technology to ensure that Medicare beneficiaries are physically present to receive services. Many times, the elderly are tricked into giving up their Medicare ID to unscrupulous service providers. These providers then bill Medicare for services that are never given and equipment that is never used.
Said Ros-Lehtinen: "This bill will help give law enforcement the tools necessary to make even more arrests and track down the criminals perpetuating this fraud. We need to approve this legislation and I am pleased that the process to do so is well on its way."