Why Medicare Advantage costs taxpayers billions more than it should

By Fred Schulte, David Donald and Erin Durkin

Critics warned of billing abuse in Medicare Advantage health plans, but oversight is lagging.

Excerpts from this story referencing "New York":

"… icker than normal — a claim many experts have challenged. In Rochester, New York, a Medicare plan was paid $41 million to treat people with serious disease …"

"… plans that date back as far as 2007. Excellus Health Plan, the Rochester, New York, health plan that federal auditors said may have overbilled by as much as …"

The other Washington could hold the key to Medicare's cost crisis

By Joe Eaton

Washington state won't pay for medical procedures that don't work. Why can't Medicare do that?

Excerpts from this story referencing "Medicaid Services":

"… nt health or are not worth the price tag. But the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the agency that administers the program, has for the most part fail …"

"… or ineffective procedures. Most importantly, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services have no authority to consider cost in their coverage policy decisions. By …"

"… cisions are actually made in Washington, D.C. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services administers the program, but the nuts-and-bolts processes of running the p …"

Eyelid lifts skyrocket among Medicare patients, costing taxpayers millions

By Joe Eaton and David Donald

Medicare paying more and more as critics question rationale for procedure that's often cosmetic.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Thomas Scully":

"… icare’s requirement that peripheral vision actually be impaired.   Thomas Scully, former Medicare administrator under George W. Bush, has a blunter assessm …"

How doctors and hospitals have collected billions in questionable Medicare fees

By Fred Schulte and David Donald

Center investigation suggests cost from upcoding and other abuses likely tops $11 billion.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Thomas Scully":

"… icare’s chronic vulnerability to abuse and fraud, several experts said. Thomas Scully, an architect of the Medicare pay scales during his White House days under …"

OPINION: Guess who would benefit from privatizing Medicare?

By Wendell Potter

Privatizing Medicare would help insurers, not seniors.

Excerpts from this story referencing "WellPoint":

"… has represented some of the country’s biggest health insurers, including WellPoint and Cigna, is advocating a gradual phase-in of the Ryan plan, similar to h …"

Top health information technology firms prefer 'revolving door' lobbyists

By Josh Israel

Top health information technology firms want lobbyists with Capitol Hill or executive branch experience

Excerpts from this story referencing "Congress":

"… hat multibillion-dollar pie.  Some are also lobbying against moves in Congress to reduce the overall pot of HITECH money.Many health IT firms don’t lob …"

"… as having done health IT lobbying for those firms, at least 63 were former Congressional and/or executive branch staffers, many of whom worked for health-rela …"

"… o more profit for the industry. And “while the close connections between Congress, the executive branch, and industry can bring some expertise to the table …"

Washington lobbying giants cash in on health reform debate

By Joe Eaton, M.B. Pell and Aaron Mehta

While patients, taxpayers and lawmakers debate the impact of the health care reform law President Obama signed on Tuesday, one result of the

Excerpts from this story referencing "Podesta Group":

"… Patton Boggs LLP, Alston & Bird, LLP, Holland & Knight LLP and the Podesta Group.About 1,750 businesses and organizations spent at least $1.2 billion in 20 …"

"… on to its in-house lobbyists. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. hired Patton Boggs LLP, Podesta Group Inc, Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti, Inc, and Bryan Cave LLP. Narrative continu …"

"… llectual property work have been recognized as strengths.No. 4 (Tie): Podesta Group Inc.28 clientsHow much clients spent on health care and other issues in 20 …"