Missouri hospital overbilled Medicare contractor, recovery audit finds

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recently found the Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri, to have overbilled a Medicare contractor, while the healthcare provider has agreed to pay the full amount back of $725,185, according to the St. Louis Business Journal.

A recovery audit by the HHS' Office of the Inspector General found that the hospital had billing errors for 58 Medicare claims, which came to $332,365 for inpatient charges and $392,829 for outpatient. The report from the HHS states that the hospital did not have a proper system of checks and balances in place to stop the incorrect billing.

Stltoday.com reports that some of the billing errors included calculation mistakes, incorrect coding and unreported credits. These mistakes can be attributed to wrong dates and times on paperwork and coordinating doctors' signatures, says the news source.

The St. Louis Business Journal states that the hospital is paying back the full amount to Wisconsin Physician Services, the Medicare contractor. The news provider also says that Barnes-Jewish has taken steps to prevent further inaccurate billing. This includes upgrading and updating coding software, educating employees on concerns and conducting more internal audits.

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