Penis Pumps for Women?

Julie Ryan Evans
2

penis pumpWho would buy a penis pump for a woman?

Turns out the federal government has been doing just that, for many women in fact.

In a bad example of some of the flaws in our nation's health care system, Medicare paid $395 a pop for vacuum erection systems for allegedly needy patients, including women. In total, Medicare paid out $28,600 to a couple of men in Florida who were running the fraudulent scheme.

First of all, if you look up penis pumps on Amazon.com or do a quick search on the web, there are penis pumps a plenty for under $30. The most expensive one I found was about $130, so the fact that the government was shelling out almost $400 for each is crazy enough. And of course, the fact that they were approving them for women is just baffling.

In one case, a single woman was approved for FOUR penis pumps.

"That we should have caught," a representative from Health and Human Services told the Miami Herald.

Uh, YEAH!

How is it that when I try to get a legitimate expense covered through my insurance carrier, I have to jump through endless hoops, but someone can fraud the system like this so easily?

Penis pumps were only part of the fake claims the men -- Emilio Lopez and Orlando Estevez -- made. In all, they submitted $1.9 million; Medicare reimbursed them for $735,000.

The men have been arrested and will appear in court Monday.

While this is a sensational case because of the nature of the merchandise, it's not an isolated one. An NPR article titled "How Fighting Health Fraud Is Like Playing Whack-A-Mole" says taxpayers are bilked out of $65 billion a year due to health fraud.

Are you surprised to see cases of Medicare fraud continue to persist like this one? What do you think would improve the system?


Image via Newser

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