An Illinois congressman says there’s money to be found in Medicare. U.S. Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Wheaton), who’s chairman of the Subcommittee on Oversight in the House Ways & Means Committee, says the director of fraud for Medicare testified before his panel that the fraud or error rate at Medicare is 12.7 percent. “12.7 percent of Medicare payment are fraudulent or erroneous. That translates into $1 billion a week, every week, out the door,” he said.
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Medicare pays claims first, then investigates their validity later. It’s not clear how much of that $1 billion a week is recovered, but Roskam says Medicare should change its system, and more carefully examine its invoices. He $1 billion a week is money that could be used for something else, if fraud and errors were minimized through aggressive compliance checks. However, in the same speech, he criticized the IRS for being heavy handed when going after those it suspects of not paying their taxes.