OIG 2006 work plan includes inspection goals for SNFs

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Among the items on the fiscal year 2006 to-do list for the Office of Inspector General: Investigate whether skilled nursing facility rehab therapy services are medically necessary and whether SNF funds provided by Medicare in 2003 to improve patient care were used for this goal.

These two tasks were listed on the work plan released this week by the OIG, which is part of the Department of Health and Human Services. The plan consists of areas where audits, inspections, investigations will take place. It also includes legal counsel focus areas and other subjects of OIG inspection.

Some specific topics for the coming year: Determine the effectiveness of controls to preclude duplicate billings under the consolidated billing program, review claims for therapy services to determine whether the services were medically necessary, and compare Medicare payment rates for certain medical equipment and supplies with the rates of other federal and state health programs.

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