Health and Human Services Cost Saving Ideas

Welcome to the “Cost Savings Ideas” website of Governor Paul LePage. Here, you are invited to share your ideas for promoting cost savings in the Department off Health and Human Services, Dirigo Health, Disability Rights Center, Foundation for Blood Research, Maine Children’s Trust, Inc. (Board), Maine Health Data Organization, Maine Hospice Council, Maine Veteran’s Home (Board of Trustees), and other related agencies.

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Please share your government cost saving ideas in the area of health and human services here.

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  1. Audit the number of EBT (SNAP Portion) of replacement cards over specific time period like 6 months

    If a person is selling or handing over to another individual their EBT (SNAP card) for the purchase or drugs or alcohol, chances are they are requesting a new card to replace the one utilized for the above purchases.

    It would be wise to query the number of cards issued over a six-month period to individuals receiving benefits. If a person has replaced a card more than twice in less then six months, it would be worth looking into the situation.

    Unless it is an example listed below, and there maybe other examples, but these are the more common situations.…

    12 votes
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      0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    • Worm and Clam diggers

      Many of these individuals only claim 10% of their income as it is not monitored. So in a sense they are double dipping, making $60,000.00 a year, reporting $6,000.00 as income and getting food stamps, welfare, and a HUGE return on the taxpayers back.

      9 votes
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        0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
      • Gov. Lepage,

        I am sorry to say this. not trying to be rude! I am tired of DHHS and immigrants are being served first and are giving everything to them, That's using our tax dollars. We need to help our own people, Americans. You go into a hospital and immigrants are preventing real emergencies from being cared for. Grant it there are some foreigners that work hard. But not many we need to take care of our own people before we help them. Our country is going down and its the governments fault. I am not the only one that feels this.…

        6 votes
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          0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
        • Welfare Reform/Abuse/Fraud

          Past weekend in a retail estabilshment that does drug testing on employees. Was informed that 6 individuals applied for work, 5 failed a drug test. These 5 recepient names should be submitted to DHHS and cross checked with those receiving Welfare benefits. if the individual is collecting welfare benefits those benefits should cease.

          11 votes
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            0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
          • A parent in Maine should not entitle you to full MaineCare if your income is low enough; they should have a premium-

            Working Mainers pay high premiums to have health insurance from their employer or even through the Federal Market Place. Just because you are a parent in Maine should not entitle you to full Maine Care if your income is low enough; they should have a premium that they are required to pay each month similar to Cub Care for children.

            2 votes
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              0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
            • Food Stamp Credits

              If Food Stamp recepients are entitled to a certain amount of funds, ie $400.00 each month, at the end of the month any remaining amount that was not spent should be deducted from the next months alotment. For example: If the individual received $400.00 and at month end only spent $275.00 of it, (thus leaving a credit of $125.00 unused that month) on the next food stamp alotment it would be reloaded with $275.00 bringing that months balance back to $400.00.

              2 votes
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                0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
              • take a healthy portion of tax return funds from those that are receiving state help and return these funds back into the programs they use.

                take a healthy portion of tax return funds from those that are receiving state help and return these funds back into the programs they use. Cap their available returns to a small amount instead of giving them several thousand of dollars to spend on useless products(I know this does not apply to all who receive these tax credits),if funds were returned back into these programs than maybe more people could get a little extra help or the programs could stay in existence.

                7 votes
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                  0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                • Impose a Zero Tolerance of Abuse by staff for residents in nursing home.

                  Currently, it is difficult to justify an abuse complaint as the resident is viewed as a liar. I would like to see data collected for abuse complaints made to the Nursing Board by MaineCare residents or their families in their behalf which were found "no abuse founded after investigation" and compare them to the complaints made by residents and family memebers of those with insurance. Maybe just how many complaints are made in general per year in Maine? I feel there is a need to stay on top of this. A Zero Tolerance may also increase our standard of care…

                  7 votes
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                    0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                  • get people off welfare

                    Social services should review and investigate receiptants. Too many are soaking the state for being lazy. Most should be working because they really can.

                    15 votes
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                      1 comment  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                    • Health and Human services should make spot home visits.

                      It should be expected that a team of workers are assigned to go to the addresses of people receiving benefits and see 'what's happening' through home visits. This may be beneficial for some people as they may need more help than what they are requesting and the workers can help them, while others may have new cars, large screen TVs or working "under the table" and the workers can intervene with that too. I think direct observation of recipients situation is far more accurate than depending on a recipients voluntary information.

                      8 votes
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                        3 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                      • Welfare fraud in state government

                        Gov. League should be going after 50 percent of welfare fraud to state employees that fraud the welfare system. The fraud started there! Many employees of state gov. Fraud the welfare tanif/ system that goes way back! Claiming children that weren't supporting the fathers was/ embezzling money/ food/heating assistance. Ect.

                        2 votes
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                          0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                        • telecommute for state employees -or work 4 --10 hour days

                          allow state employees to telecommute and work from home so many days per month
                          less time in the offices or go to 4 -- 10 hour days and shut the office down 1 day per month or 1 day per week

                          12 votes
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                            0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                          • Increase funding for western blot test for Lyme disease

                            The CDC's official estimate in the number of cases of Lyme disease in the US has increased from 30,000 to 300,000 in the past year alone. Lyme is a disease that, when not treated promptly and aggressively, can result in far more serious implications than the initial flu-like symptoms. The condition known as "Chronic" or "post" Lyme disease syndrome has been a source of a good amount of both attention and controversy in the news lately. I'm close with somebody who's dealing with it, and I know exactly how debilitating and frustrating it can be for a person. Victims are…

                            4 votes
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                              0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                            • Reduce the cost of opioid abuse by capturing/verifying ALL prescriptions before filling: http://slidesha.re/1nNb9OL

                              Technology captures each prescription as it is written, checks to see if doctor shopping is possible. Tech. also checks prescription when being filled, checks to see if recently filled elsewhere. Stopped fraud pays for the system and then some: http://slidesha.re/1nNb9OL

                              2 votes
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                                0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                              • Distribute food boxes with necessary staples only instead of handing out food stamps.

                                My family and I had to rely on assistance with food when we first moved back to Maine four yrs. ago. We were given so much in food stamps, far more than what we needed. We only used that as a stepping stone, however, I think far too many people rely on it. As a working Mainer, I can only afford to purchase no name brands, as I watch food stamp recipients in front of me in line buying the best of everything. Not fair. Sends a wrong message. I think that boxes filled with staple, like rice, peanut butter,…

                                17 votes
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                                  0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                • Clarify State MaineCare eligibility Rules for the identification of assets as countable or as "unavailable" in ACES--

                                  There is typically a $2,000 asset limit for MaineCare eligibility. However, this limit is disregarded when assets over these limits are identified by DHHS-OFI personnel as "unavailable" as they enter it into ACES during the eligibility or application process.

                                  PROBLEM: Current methods used to determine whether assets are countable toward this $2,000 limit are far too subjective, and open to judgment error. State personnel are forced to place too much reliance upon the good word of MaineCare applicants. Since most OFI personnel have expertise in other areas, they do not have adequate knowledge of the different types of financial instruments…

                                  4 votes
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                                    0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                  • No work=no pay

                                    1. Put all welfare recipients to work at schools, hospitals, nursing homes, day cares, soup kitchens. No free ride, they're getting paid, how about earning it?
                                    2. Drug testing for all recipients.
                                    3. Outlaw prehumous estate planning and asset transfers; it exists to get the free ride in many cases.
                                    4. Limit foods accessible to food stamp/EBT to healthy foods; align with WIC guidelines, not t-bones & doritos
                                    5. Eliminate unemployment hearing officers and hire former business managers that have a clue.
                                    6. Require minimum citizenship durations before eligibility for programs is allowed.
                                    7. Demand proof that attempts to garner…

                                    53 votes
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                                      1 comment  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

                                      There are many ideas here, which makes it difficult to address. See below for responses to a few.
                                      1. The ASPIRE program is to encourage more people to participate in work and work-related activities.
                                      2. Maine will began drug testing of convicted felons within the next few months.
                                      3. Under review
                                      4. The federal government has not allowed Maine to ban junk food.
                                      5. Unemployment is a different department.
                                      6. Residential residency requirements are not allowed per Federal law.
                                      7.The Legislature rejected the Governor’s proposal to require proof of applying for three jobs before receiving benefits.
                                      8 & 9. These are under other departments.

                                    • Food stamp Fraud: DHHS has no system in place to stop food stamps from parents when there childern are taken away from them! DHHS depends on

                                      Have a computer program that informs the other departments of this change. Now it would be automatic.

                                      14 votes
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                                        0 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                      • Nursing home physician waste

                                        I thought I'd mention an area of waste I'm painfully aware of. Nursing homes. And it's not because the residents are getting too many pieces of bologna, or their beds are held too many days while they are in the hospital. There is a facility that has 62 residents. The doctor comes by once a week on Wednesdays. He gets there at 11am and is gone by 2pm. The nurses tell him how it is, and he agrees. I know of someone who waited 5 years for physical therapy that she never received. Yet the facility gets money for also…

                                        4 votes
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                                          under review  ·  1 comment  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                        • No bottle deposits on Food Stamps

                                          Botlle deposits are not edible and sholud not be paid for by food stamps. If there is a sin tax, it should not be purchased with food stamps. Seems simple enough, food stamps use to be that way. If it's taxable, why should our tax money( via SNAP) be used to pay the sin tax, that money should be spent on healthy foods.
                                          I have watched Snap participants by several cases of soda at a time. Then the bottles are returned for cash, to by ciggaretts and alcohol.
                                          Many SNAP participants are also given a $10. stipen that I believe…

                                          6 votes
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                                            under review  ·  1 comment  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
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