Report: OHA falls short on fixing Medicaid payment problems

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — The secretary of state’s office says the Oregon Health Authority still needs to strengthen its efforts to detect and avoid improper Medicaid payments.

The office’s audit division on Wednesday released a follow-up report to a 2017 audit that found widespread problems in the Health Authority’s payment system for Medicaid.

The Statesman Journal reports that auditors found that two of the eight recommendations in the audit have been put in place and six recommendations have been partially implemented.

OHA officials agreed with all the recommendations.

The original 44-page audit, released in November 2017, found problems such as poor management of payment and eligibility issues and a lack of an agency-wide process to detect improper payments.

At the time, auditors also found the agency had about $88 million in avoidable expenses because of its backlog in determining eligibility for Medicaid recipients. Medicaid provided health insurance benefits to about one million low-income Oregonians in 2017.