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TN program for uninsured wasted almost $1.5 million in taxpayer money

By   /   September 17, 2013  /   News  /   No Comments

By Chris Butler | Tennessee Watchdog

NASHVILLE — Taxpayers lost almost $1.5 million last year because state officials failed to identify 24 people who were ineligible for the state’s AccessTN program but participated anyway, according to a recently released audit by state comptrollers.

AccessTN was created to provide health insurance to state residents who are uninsurable because of pre-existing medical conditions.

BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee contracts with the Department of Finance and Administration and makes eligibility determinations for the program and administers health-care coverage to eligible members.

WASTED: State comptrollers found that AccessTN wasted almost $1.5 million on people who didn’t rightfully qualify.

Auditors examined the processes used by the finance department to determine applicants’ eligibility and to determine whether their processes were appropriate.

Auditors also found that two members’ application packets lacked sufficient information to determine if they were eligible for AccessTN benefits.

Tennessee Watchdog contacted the state’s TennCare agency, which oversees the program, for comment. TennCare spokeswoman Sarah Tanksley said a response to the audit is forthcoming.

Contact Christopher Butler at [email protected]

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Chris formerly served as staff reporter for Watchdog.org.