Gov. Asa Hutchinson
has moved another Republican regular into a top state agency position. John Parke,
who's been an officer in his family's Little Rock printing business and made a couple of unsuccessful races for legislature, has been named to lead the Department of Human Services' payment integrity unit, aimed at preventing improper Medicaid spending and to recover such money.
Parke, who lives in Paron, was described as a former data analyst with a Vanderbilt degree in math and a minor in computer science. He'll be paid $88,986. Said a release:
DHS Deputy Director Mark White, who is over Medicaid and the Division of Medical Services, said Parke is experienced at digging into businesses’ financial and data systems as well as processes to make the businesses more efficient.
.... This new Payment Integrity Unit will focus on prevention and recoveries by utilizing data analytics and industry best practices to identify systemic sources of waste. DHS and the Office of Medicaid Inspector General will then collaborate on correcting the existing policies, new training for DHS and provider staff, and addressing shortcomings in the current claim processing procedures.
No word yet if DHS will ever get its arms around straightening out the enrollment and eligibility verfication glitches that still plague people hoping to get Medicaid coverage. Just this morning, I heard from a 61-year-old woman who said she was dropped from Medicaid for lack of eligibility verification. She said she never received a notice, though she'd checked because keeping her coverage was important. She said her continuing conversations with DHS workers indicate continuing problems with computer software.