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Medicare paid millions in bonuses to ineligible doctors

San Antonio Express-News, April 24, 2012

Medicare paid physicians millions of dollars in bonuses to treat the medically needy in parts of Texas and across the country, though many doctors no longer qualified for the cash and federal officials knew it, a Houston Chronicle investigation has found. Nationally, $33 million in unwarranted bonuses were paid by Medicare in 2010 alone, federal officials concede. Under a little-known federal incentive, primary care doctors who work in communities short of health care options qualify for a 10 percent bonus for each Medicare claim they file.