Health care task force provides update on its work
Updated 5:36 pm, Wednesday, October 19, 2016
CHICAGO (AP) — Illinois Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner renewed his emphasis on finding waste in taxpayer-funded health care programs Wednesday by releasing a report from a task force he created to study the matter.
Established in April, the group has studied the best practices of agency fraud prevention units, the efforts of the federal government and other state governments and those in the private sector. But savings have been elusive so far.
The state has removed about 6,000 dependents from the State Employee Group Insurance Program for eligibility issues such as divorced spouses and adult children, which reaped $20 million in savings last fiscal year. The employee group insurance program covers most of the state's employees, their dependents and retirees and costs taxpayers about $3 billion a year.
However, the group health insurance plans haven't been paid in more than a year because of the ongoing state budget crisis. Insurers have continued to voluntarily pay health care professionals and hospitals despite the fact that the state is far behind on doling out for monthly premiums.
Rauner's task force plans to continue to look for ways to eliminate waste in other areas, such as in-home health care services, according to its report.
"Every dollar that is improperly spent in our health care programs is a dollar that is not reaching our most vulnerable residents," Rauner said in a statement.