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Texas NEMT Lacked Criminal Background and Drug Tests – Results in $31Million of Improper Payments

The Office of Inspector General (OIG)  recommended Texas return $31 million in improper reimbursements related to its non-emergency medical transportation (NEMT) program. Texas, like all states that administer Medicaid, applied for reimbursement from the federal government for providing eligible Medicaid beneficiaries transportation if they have no other options and a medical reason for the transportation exists. Unfortunately the Texas Medicaid agency overseeing the NEMT program failed to:

  1. Verify that the NEMT vehicles had been registered and inspected.
  2. Verify that criminal background checks were administered to drivers.
  3. Verify that drug tests were administered to drivers.

It is unknown from the OIG’s report whether any serious injuries or wrongful deaths resulted in this mismanagement of Texas’ NEMT program. However, it raises serious questions about claims of injury from patients whom NEMT was their only available transportation.

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