Wednesday, Michigan’s Attorney General–Michael Cox–alongside Republican legislators supported a bill being drafted by the Michigan legislature that would create a Michigan Office of Medicaid Inspector General (OMIG). This office would convert the already-in-place Medicaid Fraud Control Unit to an office that audits Medicaid activities and helps detect and prevent Medicaid fraud by having the power to monitor and audit Medicaid systems and records that are independent of Michigan’s Department of Community Health. Cox says that Michigan tax payers will benefit greatly from this as the state spends roughly $10 billion a year for Medicaid, alone.
Michigan is not the only state implementing a state OMIG. Florida, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, and Texas all have their own state-OMIGs. New York, for instance, has reported great success in recovering over to $500 million in a single year.
Concerns that creating this office would be costly are rebutted by Cox’s contention that because an auditing body already exists, there would be very little costs associated with simply moving the auditing body somewhere else. Additionally, Governor, Jennifer Granholm states that she is concerned about potential breaches of privacy when auditors are given unrestricted access to Medicaid patient records.
This new move by Cox could be the beginning of many as he plans to run for Governor of Michigan in 2010.
For more information, please call Abby Pendleton, Esq., Robert Iwrey, Esq., Adrienne Dresevic, Esq., Carey F. Kalmowitz, Esq. or Jessica L. Gustafson, Esq. at (248) 996-8510 or visit The HLP website.