U.S. Representative Dan Boren (D-OK) is calling for a federal investigation of CMS Recovery Audit Contractors (RACs) that audit hospitals' Medicare billing. The Recovery Audit Program, authorized by the Tax Relief and Health Care Act of 2006, was established as an effort to reduce unnecessary and improper Medicare costs. To implement the program, CMS divided the United States into four regions and an auditing firm was selected to carry out hospital Medicare cost recovery audits in each region. According to an August 15, 2012 news release from his office, Rep. Boren asserts that rural providers are particularly disadvantaged by the RAC process since such hospitals often have limited resources in responding to the review and appeals process. Boren also says that certain RACs, such as Connolly, Inc. (the exclusive RAC for “Region C”), “are causing significant survival choices for rural hospitals by impacting operational cash flow, cash reserves, and any other publicly approved support in the form of city or county taxes.”
Click here to read Rep. Boren’s news release.