HHS Awards $4.5M in Grants To Educate Seniors About Medicare
HHS Secretary Tommy Thompson on Wednesday announced $4.5 million in grants to states to create or continue programs that train retired professionals to help Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries "become better health care consumers." The Senior Medicare Patrol Project pays for the training of retired doctors, nurses, accountants, investigators, law enforcement personnel, attorneys and teachers. These volunteers then organize community education events to teach skills including how to identify and prevent billing errors and potential fraud. The grants, which will be distributed in 45 states and the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, will create 28 new projects and fund 23 existing projects. Thompson said, "These projects are helping older Americans better understand their Medicare and Medicaid billing statements, so that they can take appropriate steps to correct errors. Through these kinds of programs, beneficiaries can become better health care consumers and play an important role in helping the Medicare and Medicaid programs avoid payment errors" (HHS release, 7/3).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.