Jacobs calls for Medicaid reforms to root out fraud, abuse
Paul Jacobs doesn’t like what he’s envisioning coming from Springfield.
“Instead of raising taxes on working families like (Rep.) Terri Bryant (R-Murphysboro) joined with Democrats to do, I’ve already started identifying ways to save taxpayers money,” Jacobs said last week in a press release.
Jacobs, the Pomona Republican who is running against Bryant in the Republican primary in the 115th District, said he can see the handwriting on the wall in terms of how legislators plan to deal all the abuses in the taxpayer-funded Medicaid system by again raising taxes.
An Illinois Healthcare Fraud Elimination Task Force 2017 report found that the Department of Health and Human Services estimates as much as $35 billion in net fraudulent Medicaid payments were doled out nationwide in 2016.
Jacobs added the only way the state will ever be able to erase its massive debt load is by eliminating fraud and waste in entitlement spending.
“Without reforms, our politicians will no doubt vote to hike our taxes again,” he said in the release. “We need to continue efforts to have better collaboration among state agencies in rooting out potential fraud and better use of data and metrics to maximize the state’s resources. Eliminating costly waste will assure taxpayers that the money they are spending on public health is in fact going to the people who need the help. Unwilling to pass structural reforms, Terri Bryant has demonstrated she’d rather join with Chicago Democrats to hike our taxes.”
Jacobs added needed reforms shouldn’t be limited to the Medicaid system. In addition to drug testing for Medicaid recipients, he is also calling for photo IDs on Link cards and a ban on entitlement benefits for welfare recipients who abuse drugs.
“Taxpayers should not be paying for health benefits for people who are doing great damage to their overall health by using illegal, recreational drugs,” he said. “We also should require photo ID’s on Link cards so that only the person authorized to use the card is the one actually using it. This reform will cut down on much of the fraud and abuse we see.”
Jacobs is also pushing for legislation mandating that people receiving entitlement benefits be U.S. citizens.
“These common-sense reforms could potentially save taxpayers millions,” he said. “That is why I will co-sponsor House Bills 4180, 4181, and 4182. Terri Bryant’s silence on this issue can only mean she thinks her work is done now that she has hiked our taxes.”
The 115th District covers Jackson, Jefferson, Washington, Perry and Union counties.