SALEM, Ore. -

State Sen. Tim Knopp, R-Bend, said Monday he is set to push reforms to Oregon’s programs and methodology to improve Medicaid payment integrity.

If passed, Senate Bill 753 could potentially save the State of Oregon millions of dollars each year, with minimal costs to implement this element to the program, Knopp said.

SB 753 extends the latest in technology fraud fighting to preventing fraud before it happens, by reducing both improper payments, cost, and time involved with traditional “pay and chase” recovery.

“With Medicaid fraud becoming increasingly more complex, it is critical that Oregon updates and improves its policies to remain vigilant,” Knopp said. “SB 753 adds the technologies necessary to assure the long term solvency of Medicaid by ensuring that these critical programs will be available for those that are truly in need of help.”

SB 753 was set to have its first hearing, Monday at 3 p.m. in the Senate Committee On Health Care and Human Services. Along with Knopp, SB 753 has the bi-partisan support of Senate Health Care Committee Vice-Chair Jeff Kruse (R-Roseburg) and Doctor Alan Bates (D-Ashland).

“My goal is to enact strong preventive controls that can help defend against improper payments, increasing public confidence and avoiding the difficult “pay and chase” aspects of recovering improper payments,” Knopp continues. “Annually, the federal government estimates that state Medicaid programs forfeits around $18 billion dollars that is attributed to fraud, waste and abuse – taxpayer money that could be used for its intended purposes.”