The Cost of Medicare and Medicaid Fraud

Medicare and Medicaid are two huge social programs that are heavily used in the US. Without them millions of people would be unable to afford healthcare. These programs offer health coverage to those who meet certain income limitations, or they meet certain age requirements. They are highly efficient, but they do have some flaws.

The Size of the Programs

Every year the US spends somewhere around $2.5 trillion on healthcare expenses. This includes all of the insurances, hospital costs, etc. Out of that $2.5 trillion, roughly $1 trillion is spent by Medicare and Medicaid. This goes to everything from hospital visits, to long-term care in a nursing home. The problem is that these programs are so big, that they are ripe with fraud. Unfortunately some people think that because they are just taking from the government, they don’t really see it as stealing.

The Cost of Medicaid and Medicare Fraud

Just how much fraud occurs? The FBI estimates that healthcare fraud is between 3% and 10% of all the billings every year. If we apply those numbers to these two industries, that means about $30 to $100 billion is the result of fraud.

But that may not be an accurate assessment. Because the systems are so big, and because people think it’s ok to steal from the government, the fraud may be as much as $200 billion every year. That means every citizen of the country is on the hook for about $650 of fraudulent expenses every year. Because those bilking Medicaid and Medicare aren’t stealing from the government, they are stealing from the taxpayers.

You Can Help

If you work for a nursing home or medical facility, chances are you see some of this fraud occurring. If you know of the fraud, you can blow the whistle on the criminals. With your help the taxpayers won’t be stolen from, and you could earn a portion of the settlement.