Map of life expectancy at birth from Global Education Project.

Thursday, March 01, 2018

Waste, fraud and abuse

It turns out that Medicare spends something like $300 million every year on chiropractic treatment which the DHHS Inspector General deems improper. That's about half of all the money they spend on chiropractic.

The linked essay by Jan Bellamy sort of beats around the bush so I'll cut to the chase. In order to qualify for Medicare reimbursement, chiropractic treatment needs to address a diagnosed "subluxation" of the spine, and half the time they aren't actually doing that, according to the IG. Okay. But actually, they are never doing that, because there is no such thing, and chiropractic treatment is total BS.

So what they should really do is stop paying for it altogether and save $600 million. They don't pay for homeopathy or naturopathy, and they shouldn't pay for chiropractic treatment either. People who need physical therapy should go to a physical therapist.

1 comment:

Gay Boy Bob said...

I'm with ya'. Not sure why private insurance covers chiropractic either, but they do.

Try this for waste:

James Cosgrove, who directs health care reviews for the Government Accountability Office, told the House Ways and Means oversight subcommittee that the Medicare Advantage improper payment rate was 10 percent in 2016, which comes to $16.2 billion.
Adding in the overpayments for standard Medicare programs, the tally for last year approaches $60 billion — which is almost twice as much as the National Institutes of Health spends on medical research each year.