Health care cost control (31 - 40 of 321 items)
Medicare: Sponsors' Management of the Prescription Drug Discount Card and Transitional Assistance Benefit
GAO-06-299R: Published: Jan 13, 2006. Publicly Released: Feb 21, 2006.
The Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 (MMA) added a prescription drug benefit to the Medicare program, which became effective January 1, 2006. To assist Medicare beneficiaries with their prescription drug costs until the new benefit became available, the MMA also required the establishment of a temporary program, the Medicare Prescription Drug Discount Card and...
Medicare: CMS's Beneficiary Education and Outreach Efforts for the Medicare Prescription Drug Discount Card and Transitional Assistance Program
GAO-06-139R: Published: Nov 18, 2005. Publicly Released: Nov 30, 2005.
The Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 required the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) in the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to broadly disseminate information on the program to the millions of Medicare beneficiaries--seniors and people under age 65 with permanent disabilities--who are eligible for a drug discount card. In response, CM...
Medicare: Little Progress Made in Targeting Outpatient Therapy Payments to Beneficiaries' Needs
GAO-06-59: Published: Nov 10, 2005. Publicly Released: Nov 10, 2005.
For years, Congress has wrestled with rising Medicare costs and improper payments for outpatient therapy services--physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech-language pathology. In 1997 Congress established per-person spending limits, or "therapy caps," for nonhospital outpatient therapy but, responding to concerns that some beneficiaries need extensive services, has since placed temporary...
Medicare Fee-for-Service Beneficiary Access to Physician Services: Trends in Utilization of Services, 2000 to 2002
GAO-05-145R: Published: Jan 12, 2005. Publicly Released: Feb 9, 2005.
In the 1990s, several reforms to Medicare physician fees were implemented to help control spending growth in the traditional Medicare program, known as fee-for-service (FFS) Medicare. Concerns were raised that these reforms might have a negative impact on Medicare beneficiaries' access to physician services, but at the end of the decade, there was little or no evidence of nationwide access problem...
Medicare: CMS's Program Safeguards Did Not Deter Growth in Spending for Power Wheelchairs
GAO-05-43: Published: Nov 17, 2004. Publicly Released: Dec 15, 2004.
Medicare spending for power wheelchairs--one of the program's most expensive items of durable medical equipment (DME)--rose more than fourfold from 1999 through 2003, while overall Medicare spending rose by about 11 percent for the same period, according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). This spending growth has raised concerns that some of the payments may have been improper...
Medicare Physician Payments: Concerns about Spending Target System Prompt Interest in Considering Reforms
GAO-05-85: Published: Oct 8, 2004. Publicly Released: Oct 8, 2004.
Concerns were raised about the current system Medicare uses to determine annual changes to physician fees--the sustainable growth rate (SGR) system--when fees were reduced by 5.4 percent in 2002. Subsequent administrative and legislative actions modified or overrode the SGR system, resulting in fee increases for 2003, 2004, and 2005. However, projected fee reductions for 2006-2012 have raised new...
Medicare: Past Experience Can Guide Future Competitive Bidding for Medical Equipment and Supplies
GAO-04-765: Published: Sep 7, 2004. Publicly Released: Sep 7, 2004.
The Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 (MMA) requires the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to conduct large-scale competitive bidding for durable medical equipment, supplies, off-the-shelf orthotics, and enteral nutrients and related equipment and supplies provided to beneficiaries. The Balanced Budget Act of 1997 mandated that GAO study an earlier...
Milwaukee Health Care Spending Compared to Other Metropolitan Areas: Geographic Variation in Spending for Enrollees in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program
GAO-04-1000R: Published: Aug 18, 2004. Publicly Released: Aug 23, 2004.
Health care spending varies across the country due to differences in the use and price of health care services. Understanding the reasons for utilization and price variation may contribute to developing methods to control health care spending. This report provides preliminary results from our work on geographic variations in health care spending and prices. Congress asked us to examine geographic...
Comptroller General's Forum on Health Care: Unsustainable Trends Necessitate Comprehensive and Fundamental Reforms to Control Spending and Improve Value
GAO-04-793SP: Published: May 1, 2004. Publicly Released: May 1, 2004.
Unrelenting growth in health care spending has put pressure on policymakers to seek health care system reforms. The stress comes partly from a wide gap in expectations between what health care Americans want and what the nation can afford and sustain. GAO's Health Care Forum was held on January 13, 2004, to find ways to elevate the nation's understanding of health care cost, access, and quality ch...
Medicare: CMS Did Not Control Rising Power Wheelchair Spending
GAO-04-716T: Published: Apr 28, 2004. Publicly Released: Apr 28, 2004.
Medicare spending for power wheelchairs, one of the program's most expensive items of durable medical equipment (DME), rose 450 percent from 1999 through 2003, while overall Medicare spending rose by about 11 percent for the same period, according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). This spending growth has raised concerns that Medicare made improper payments and has payment rat...