The HHS inspector general could soon call on Florida to refund the federal government $436 million in Medicaid funds that were improperly paid to the country’s largest public hospital, according to a draft report obtained by POLITICO.
The independent auditor’s office forthcoming report could provide a politically awkward moment for top Florida Republicans closely allied with President Donald Trump. Florida officials warn the state and Jackson Memorial Hospital, which treats tens of thousands of poor patients each year, could face devastating consequences if the state is forced to pay back the money.
Florida’s Medicaid program between 2010 and 2014 wrongly paid hundreds of millions to Jackson Memorial that weren’t allowed under the terms of a program designed to reimburse hospitals for treating low-income people, according to the report. Auditors found that Florida incorrectly claimed costs for certain care for undocumented immigrants and prisoners who received outpatient care, and the hospital omitted or underreported Medicare and Medicaid payments.