Medicare: Incompetence-Based Bureaucracy
Posted By: News-Medical in Healthcare News
Published: Monday, 3-Jan-2005
In 2002, the General Accounting Office (GAO), now known as the Government Accountability Office, published a study revealing that 85 percent of the time Medicare customer service representatives (CSRs) gave the wrong answer to questions posed by physicians regarding the proper way to bill Medicare so as to obtain payment. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) promised to take steps to remedy the problem.
After reviewing the 2002 study, I concluded two years ago that a monkey could answer Medicare policy questions as accurately as a Medicare bureaucrat. Today, after examining the results of the GAO’s follow-up study, published in July 2004, I felt compelled to find a more appropriate comparison and test subject. My search ended when a creature from the family Bufonidae volunteered his services. Covered in warts, and an avid promoter of the low-carb, bug-and-fly diet, he might, I felt, have the right stuff to participate in my GAO-like study.