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CMS overpayment program halts audits


CMS has suspended contract work as part of its Recovery Audit Contractor program in response to protests filed by two unsuccessful bidders.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has suspended contract work as part of its Recovery Audit Contractor program in response to protests filed with the Government Accountability Office by two unsuccessful bidders for the program.

In October, CMS announced that RAC-launched as a demonstration in several states in 2005 to find Medicare payment fraud and abuse-will expand nationwide in phases through January 2010. A series of town-hall-type meetings to answer health-care providers' questions were slated to begin at the end of October before the bid protests were filed.

Audits in all four RAC regions across the country will be halted until a determination is made by GAO, according to CMS. Under the provisions, GAO has until early February to render a decision.

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