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The Office of Inspector General sets its sights on hospice care in nursing homes

On September 8, 2009, the Office of Inspector General posted an eye-catching report on Medicare hospice care in nursing facilities. The OIG found that 82 percent of hospice claims for beneficiaries in nursing facilities did not meet at least one Medicare coverage requirement. The Medicare hospice benefit allows a beneficiary with a terminal illness to forgo curative treatment for the illness and instead receive palliative care. Medicare paid approximately $1.8 billion for these claims.

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