Nursing Home Fraud

Florida welfare officials are proposing a bill that targets Medicaid fraud among patients who hide assets with family to get the taxpayer-funded program to pay for their nursing home care.

Patients can hire a relative or friend to oversee small aspects of their care.

Instead of being paid monthly or yearly, some caregivers are paid for years of service at a time.

That can decrease a patient's assets and help them qualify for Medicaid.

People also can sign over a spouse's financial support to the state.

Department of Children and Families spokesman Joe Follick said that allows couples with millions in assets to get Medicaid to foot the bill.

Follick said the agency wants to close loopholes to ensure that taxpayers aren't subsidizing nursing home care for the wealthy.

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