Healthcare Compliance Budgets Rising, Partly Due to RACs

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In a new survey, 40 percent of healthcare compliance professionals said their budgets are increasing in 2011, partly due to stepped-up activity by recovery audit contractors as well as more regulatory oversight to come, according to a release by Compliance 360.

In comparison, 29 percent of compliance professionals saw higher budgets in 2010. In 2011, respondents in RAC Regions B and C, which had a greater volume of RAC records requests last year, reported higher compliance budgets than the norm — at 51 percent in Region B and 41 percent in Region C.

Other factors for higher compliance budgets include the healthcare reform law, which introduces additional RAC programs, and the Obama administration's goal to reduce improper payments by 50 percent by 2012.

While 46 percent of respondents indicated they were "confident" in their current approach to managing medical claims audits, 42 percent said they are "not confident" or "somewhat confident."

In addition, 50 percent said the greatest challenge to managing claims audits is holding everyone accountable for their part of the process. Other challenges included data mining (identified by 38 percent), managing proactive self-assessments (37 percent) and providing thorough documentation to support appeals (33 percent).

Compliance 360 surveyed compliance professionals from 342 healthcare organizations.

Read the Compliance 360 release on healthcare compliance.

Read more coverage of RAC and other healthcare compliance activities.

- 9 Ways to Reorganize the Hospital to Deal With RACs

- 4 Points About the RAC Appeals Process

- 8 Actions Hospitals Can Take to Protect Against RACs

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