Consumer advocate’s view: Citizens Federation shines a light on Minnesota …

March 17, 2012 Off By administrator

Consumer advocate’s view: Citizens Federation shines a light on Minnesota …
News from Duluth News Tribune:

Some important events are taking place in St. Paul that people in the Northland aren’t much aware of, events that will have a big impact on us all. Key developments regarding health care, insurance and the state budget are unfolding outside of the local spotlight.

The state has a large problem. Private health-plan HMOs, which operate low-income programs such as Medical Assistance and MinnesotaCare, have been heavily and improperly overpaid by the state government for many years. It was announced Feb. 14 that the federal government has been investigating since last summer. In response to growing concern, and probably motivated by the news of the federal inquiry, a House committee on Feb. 28 approved a bill to require, for the first time, truly independent, external audits of the expenditures of these HMOs. The expenditures amount to more than $ 3 billion a year of taxpayer money.

The Legislature also learned that prior administrations apparently intentionally padded the HMOs’ payments for Medical Assistance to compensate for underpayment in a different program, General Assistance Medical Care. This practice seems to be a violation…………… continues on Duluth News Tribune

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Malawi police arrest top consumer advocate John Kapito
News from The Maravi Post:

BLANTYRE–Outspoken Malawi top consumer chief activist John Kapito was arrested Saturday morning in Lilongwe, police and lawyers confirmed to MaraPost but no reasons were given for his arrest.

Kapito, who chairs the state-funded Malawi Human Rights Commission (MHRC) and is also executive director of the Consumers Association of Malawi, has been critical of the Mutharika administration recently, calling Malawi a “failed state.”

Sources told MaraPost that Kapito is being interrogated at Lilongwe Police station for reasons not yet disclosed.

Kapito has in the past said the state had collapsed because the consumer was being punished by price increases because of bad economic policies by the government of Pres Bingu wa Mutharika that has seen an economic meltdown.

The President has also accused Kapito of wanting to unseat him, but the rights activist has often laughed off such suggestions.

Kapito said human rights defenders had in 2011 “lived dangerously” because there was no respect for basic rights, rule of law and governance.

©2012 The Maravi Post. Reproduction authorised, with usual acknowledgment

Tags: John Kapito  

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