Governor's Office of Elderly Affairs - An Initiative of Governor Bobby Jindal -  State of Louisiana
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News Louisiana Health Care Review Awarded National Grant to Combat Medicare/Medicaid Fraud

Louisiana seniors may soon become the largest Medicare/Medicaid fraud task force in the state. Louisiana Health Care Review (LHCR), the Medicare Quality Improvement Organization for Louisiana, in collaboration with the Senior Health Insurance Information Program (SHIIP) and the Governor's Office of Elderly Affairs (GOEA), has been awarded a federal grant funding the Louisiana Senior Medicare Patrol, a program that will recruit and train seniors to recognize and report health care fraud.

According to Linda Harkey, Louisiana SMP Program Manager, trained volunteers will conduct group education sessions, community outreach events and one-on-one counseling to equip seniors with the information needed to protect themselves from Medicare fraud, errors and abuse. Seniors will also be able to call 1-877-272-8720 to report any activity they believe might constitute health care fraud.

"Government estimates suggest that as much as $46 billion is lost each year in this country to Medicare and Medicaid fraud. Working with a broad-based collaboration of organizations that are in touch with the state's elderly population, we can begin to recapture some of these lost tax dollars. We are excited about engaging our senior in such a meaningful program," said Scott Flowers, LHCR Director of Quality Improvement.

Created in 1995, the Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP) program is funded by the US Administration on Aging and has 57 project sites throughout the country. Louisiana SMP will work in conjunction with LHCR, SHIIP, GOEA, the Louisiana Retired Teachers Association, Louisiana Attorney General's Medicaid Fraud Control Unit and other elder care agencies.

Louisiana SMP is currently organizing a statewide network of elder care organizations interested in participating in the SMP fraud education program. Organizations interested in joining the network, or individuals interested in volunteering as program instructors, should call 1-877-272-8720 or email lasmp@lhcr.org.


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