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News and updates on the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) activities.

2016 OIG Annual Report highlights background studies improvements, fraud prevention activities

The DHS Office of Inspector General (OIG) 2016 Annual Report reviews the work and accomplishments of the OIG during 2016. It highlights the significant progress implementing a new fingerprint-based background studies system for people providing health and human services, as well as work to prevent and detect provider and recipient fraud, and improvements in licensing oversight. The report also identifies trends and future challenges as the OIG continues its work to improve program integrity, accountability and protections for Minnesotans who rely on public programs.

Background documents analyze child care access, monitoring, oversight

The licensed child care issue brief, Understanding Licensed Child Care in Minnesota (PDF), provides licensing data along with an analysis of issues facing licensed child care in Minnesota. These issues include monitoring and oversight activities as well as the availability of licensed care in the state in 2016. The fact sheets address commonly asked questions and provide insight on trends in licensed care. These resources are intended to inform families, licensed providers, policy makers and other key stakeholders about licensed child care in Minnesota.

Inspector General Annual Report details progress on provider, recipient fraud

The DHS Office of Inspector General (OIG) 2015 Annual Report (PDF) reviews the year’s accomplishments, looks at trends and provides an overview of plans to improve protections for those who depend on public programs. The current annual report highlights continued work on enhancing the background studies system, and progress in working to eliminate fraudulent billing by child care center owners. In 2015, the OIG’s Licensing Division built upon its continuous improvement project to ensure maltreatment reports are completed within 60 days to the greatest extent possible.

2016 Report Details Maltreatment Information

The 2016 DHS Maltreatment Report (PDF) provides information about the number and type of reports of alleged maltreatment involving DHS licensed programs and facilities, the number of reports that required investigation and the resolution of the investigation.

Child care case establishes precedent regarding fraudulent billing

A southern Minnesota county, in consultation with the DHS Office of Inspector General (OIG), successfully excluded a childcare center from receiving public funding for one year due to fraudulent billing. The county's investigation showed that the center inflated its attendance records. On four different occasions, childcare personnel visited the center and observed fewer children than the center reported on its attendance records. Further investigation established that the center billed the state for more children than were listed on daily attendance records, and more children than were observed.

This case is important for several reasons. First, it upheld a lower standard of evidence, making it easier for counties to clamp down on intentional program violations against childcare centers that defraud the state. Now counties will only need to establish that it is more likely than not that a provider engaged in the intentional program violation.

Also, it is sufficient for a county to prove a provider's intent to commit fraud if a number of circumstances are consistent with the intent to defraud. As a result, it is not necessary for the county to introduce direct testimony or evidence of a provider's intent to commit fraud.

This case significantly benefits counties that are interested in pursuing program violations by child care providers through the administrative disqualification hearing process. 

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