Great Ideas for Cutting Costs: Six more strategies to manage the rising costs of health care

August 3, 2012
by Richard Cauchi, Kara Hinkley and Barbara Yondorf
State Legislatures Magazine


Lawmakers are chipping away at the $400 billion a year states spend on health care through a wide range of approaches, including some innovative local and private sector programs. Many appear to be working.

Monitor Prescription Drug Abuse

Insurance fraud drains public and private health insurers of up to $72.5 billion a year, according to the Coalition Against Insurance Fraud.

To combat one aspect of abuse, databases can store information on the specific prescription drugs patients need, how often they require them, and where they pick them up. When this information is monitored and analyzed, it may identify patterns of illegal use and distribution. This, in turn, can deter fraudulent prescription drug insurance claims and impede the black market resale of prescription drugs. Forty-nine states have authorized prescription drug monitoring programs, although seven are not yet operational.



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