The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

State and Nation

December 2, 2012

Alabama looking to recover $5 million from audit


The recovery audit firm is also reviewing payments from the State Employees Insurance Board to Blue Cross for medical insurance coverage, but that is not as far along.

The board's executive director, William Ashmore, said, "We have not received a final report. As soon as we received a final report, we will present it to the board for appropriate action."

Ashmore said he doesn't know when that will occur. "We'd love to get it as soon as possible because we'd like to recover this money for the state," he said.

He said $5 million is a lot of money, but it is less than 1 percent of the $1.5 billion that the board has spent with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama over the three-year period under review.

Blue Cross vice president Koko Mackin said the company has provided all information requested for the pharmacy and medical recovery audits. She said the company has not received a completed audit or request for reimbursement.

"Any discussion of segments of an incomplete audit would be inappropriate at this time," she said Friday.

Jones said the federal government has used recovery audits for years. Some state agencies have also initiated their own recovery audits in the past. But this is the first organized recovery audit process for state government as a whole, he said.

He and Marsh said the audits started with the health care programs for state employees and public school employees because they are such a big expense for the state. The next step, they said, is to look at health care expenses at public universities.


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