|Public Release Date: June 7, 1996||No. 96-22|
The Department of Human Services (DHS) is the largest agency in state government, both in terms of the number of employees and total expenditures. DHS's main function is to administer various benefits programs to eligible Minnesotans. Maria Gomez has served as commissioner since December 1993. The department's current administrative structure includes a deputy commissioner and four assistant commissioners.
Our scope was limited to those activities material to the State of Minnesota's Comprehensive Annual Financial Report for the year ended June 30, 1995, and the Single Audit for the year then ended.
The state spent nearly $3 billion for Medical Assistance, General Assistance Medical Care, and Minnesota Care during fiscal year 1995. The department's medical claims processing system, MMIS II, processed about 22 million claims during the year. The implementation of MMIS II greatly increased the department's medical claims processing capabilities. However, we found certain weaknesses and instances of noncompliance in the department's administration of these medical programs. We found that DHS made payments to medical providers on behalf of ineligible people during the initial change to a new eligibility verification system. We also found that the MAXIS and MMIS II systems contain discrepancies between eligibility status codes. Other problems included payment for medical procedures without verifying admission certification, inability to complete required federal reports, and setting certain rates not in accordance with statutory provisions.
We also found two weaknesses in the DHS computer security procedures. Some of the DHS security officers have more clearance than they need to perform their job duties. In addition, DHS has not deleted certain log-on IDs after one year. Finally, the Issuance Operations Center established an unauthorized bank account to pay for postage meter expenses.