The OIG speaks again.
This was published today….Please read. Dentists, the law is clear and in direct contradiction to the Medicaid provider manuals. Don't rely on the manuals. The OIG and OAG are aggressively pursuing offenders and are asking the public to rat you out!
Inspector General: Law Prohibits Free Gifts for Medicaid Clients
AUSTIN – The Health and Human Services Commission’s Office of Inspector General is reminding doctors and dentists that state and federal law prohibits giving free gifts to Medicaid clients.
“A doctor can’t offer a Medicaid client cash, a gift card, amusement park tickets or similar items as an incentive to get them to go to their office or clinic,” Inspector General Doug Wilson said. “That’s a violation of the laws that prohibit solicitation of Medicaid clients, and violations can carry a penalty of up to $10,000 per incident.”
Solicitation of Medicaid clients is prohibited by the federal Social Securities Act and by state laws. While current Texas State Board of Dental Examiners rules allows gifts for other patients, Wilson noted that Medicaid providers still must comply with state and federal laws banning gifts for Medicaid patients. Although providing gifts may not affect a dentist’s license, it can result in Medicaid penalties.
“When it comes to Medicaid clients, the law is clear,” he said. “Gifts for new patients aren’t allowed, and we’ll investigate any reports we get of that.”
The ban on free gifts includes transportation services, Wilson said. Medicaid clients who need a ride to a medical appointment should call the state’s Medical Transportation Program.