Governor Rick Scott has required that state employees provide more documentation to qualify for coverage.
A $950,000 investigation into the Florida health insurance program has caused 1,825 dependents to lose their coverage. The audit required state employees to submit birth certificates in order to verify a child’s eligibility. Moreover marriages required an IRS tax return transcript for authentication.
Nearly two thousand people have been taken off the state-employee health insurance program as a result.
As workers failed to provide the necessary child birth certificates and tax documents, their dependents were taken off their health plans. The investigation found that the Florida health insurance program was being used by many people who could not verify their qualification.
State agency spokesperson, Nina Ashley, was responsible for the state health insurance program’s oversight. She confirmed that the decisions have already been made for eliminating the coverage of people who had been enrolled but who could not provide the required documentation.
“No one at this point has been dismissed by us,” confirmed Ashley, a Department of Management Services employee.
The Florida health insurance program’s audit was authorized by state lawmakers under Scott’s urging.
Governor Scott’s administration urged lawmakers to conduct an investigation into the state’s employee health plan program. The lawmakers gave the nod and state employees were required to provide verification documents. Those who were not able to provide the documentation had their unqualified dependents dropped from the program.
The investigation started about five months ago, said Ashley. Since that time, 1,825 dependents have had their coverage removed from the state employee health plan program.
Last year, the Scott administration referred to the investigation as an “industry-best practice.” Moreover, they underscored that it was required to “ensure that taxpayer dollars are correctly invested.” Upon its original recommendation, the Department of Management Services issued a press release predicting that the audit would save the state $45 million.
As of yet, the forecasted savings are nowhere near that figure. So far, as the investigation nears its end, the Florida health insurance program stands to save around $9.5 million. It is unclear as to whether employees who were unable to provide documentation for their dependents will be required to reimburse the state.