The OIG urges CMS to seek authority to cut Medicare rates for clinical laboratory tests and institute copayments in light of findings that Medicare payments exceed other insurer rates by as much as 30 percent. Specifically, a recent OIG analysis concludes that Medicare paid 18% to 30% percent more than other insurers, including state Medicaid programs and Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) plans, for 20 high-volume and/or high-expenditure lab tests in the first quarter of 2011. According to the OIG, Medicare could have saved $910 million (38%) on these tests if it had paid the lowest established rate in each geographic area. In response to the OIG’s findings, CMS is exploring whether it currently has the authority to revise Medicare reimbursement for lab tests (but copayments and deductibles apparently are not being pursued).