OIG to monitor Medicare, Medicaid IT upgrades, incentives

As the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) prepares to upgrade its computer systems and begins to award incentive payments to eligible meaningful users of electronic health records, the Office of the Inspector General is positioning itself for its monitoring responsibilities. Medicare and Medicaid information systems and data security falls under the oversight of the OIG, as outlined in its work plan for 2011.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the largest healthcare payer in the country providing services to approximately 100 million beneficiaries and benefits totaling approximately $800 billion a year, released its plan for upgrading its computer and data systems on Dec. 23. The OIG is charged with monitoring those upgrades and also with overseeing the government stimulus program that will disburse billions to healthcare providers across the country who show meaningful use of electronic health records.

Oversight as detailed in the OIG's 2011 work plan includes:

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