In the interests of efficient administration of the medical assistance to the needy program and incident to the approval of rates and charges therefor, the commissioner of human services may require any reports, information, and audits of medical vendors which the commissioner deems necessary.
All reports as to the costs of operations or of medical care provided which are submitted by vendors of medical care for use in determining their rates or reimbursement shall be submitted under oath as to the truthfulness of their contents by the vendor or an officer or authorized representative of the vendor.
The commissioner shall provide for an audit of the cost and statistical data of nursing facilities participating as vendors of medical assistance. The commissioner shall select for audit at least 15 percent of the nursing facilities' data reported at random or using factors including, but not limited to: data reported to the public as criteria for rating nursing facilities; data used to set limits for other medical assistance programs or vendors of services to nursing facilities; change in ownership; frequent changes in administration in excess of normal turnover rates; complaints to the commissioner of health about care, safety, or rights; where previous inspections or reinspections under section 144A.10 have resulted in correction orders related to care, safety, or rights; or where persons involved in ownership or administration of the facility have been indicted for alleged criminal activity.
The commissioner shall meet the 15 percent requirement by either conducting an audit focused on an individual nursing facility, a group of facilities, or targeting specific data categories in multiple nursing facilities. These audits may be conducted on site at the nursing facility, at office space used by a nursing facility or a nursing facility's parent organization, or at the commissioner's office. Data being audited may be collected electronically, in person, or by any other means the commissioner finds acceptable.
The commissioner of human services, with the written consent of the recipient, on file with the local welfare agency, shall be allowed access to all personal medical records of medical assistance recipients solely for the purposes of investigating whether or not: (a) a vendor of medical care has submitted a claim for reimbursement, a cost report or a rate application which is duplicative, erroneous, or false in whole or in part, or which results in the vendor obtaining greater compensation than the vendor is legally entitled to; or (b) the medical care was medically necessary. The vendor of medical care shall receive notification from the commissioner at least 24 hours before the commissioner gains access to such records. The determination of provision of services not medically necessary shall be made by the commissioner. The commissioner may consult with an advisory task force of vendors the commissioner may appoint, on the recommendation of appropriate professional organizations. The task force expires as provided in section 15.059, subdivision 6. Notwithstanding any other law to the contrary, a vendor of medical care shall not be subject to any civil or criminal liability for providing access to medical records to the commissioner of human services pursuant to this section.
A person determined to be eligible for medical assistance shall be deemed to have authorized the commissioner of human services in writing to examine, for the investigative purposes identified in subdivision 3, all personal medical records developed while receiving medical assistance.