Hundreds of Australian dentists are being questioned regarding fraud involving Medicare billing.
The Medicare chronic dental disease scheme is permitting patients to claim more than $4,000 for dental work but many dentists overcharged or billed for work that was never done.
Dentists in Australia have collectively scammed nearly $20 million from patients and taxpayers. Some dentists will be forced to repay the money.
Based on the way the scheme works, doctors diagnose the treatment the patients need. The dentist is then supposed to perform the specified work, but in the case of this scam, doesn’t perform the work while still getting paid.
The situation needs to be monitored better to enable the people who actually cannot afford dental treatment to receive the care instead of some corrupt dentists pocketing the money.
Part of the reason the scam was capable of being pulled off is because of the high demand for dental treatment among low-income families. The money comes from taxpayers in Australia.
It appears that the program will be amended to prevent this from continuing, and the scheme will conclude as 2011 does.