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CMS trying to get physicians to stop billing a group of poor people for deductibles and co-payments

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is trying to crack down on physicians billing poor people on Medicare for deductibles, co-payments and other costs from which they’re supposed to be exempt.

The Feds are warning physicians that they might be fined or excluded form Medicare if they continue in these billing practices.

The patients being wrongly billed  are “qualified Medicare beneficiaries” who are also enrolled in Medicaid. These people are  65 and older or disabled and have low incomes, generally less than $1,010 a month for an individual or $1,355 for a married couple.

The law says that they don’t  have “any legal liability to make payment” to a physician or a hospital beyond the amounts paid by Medicare and Medicaid.

In some cases, CMS said, beneficiaries “curtail their use of needed services due to concerns about their ability to pay.”

To read a New York Times story on this, please hit this link.

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