Data pulled from two major Medicare databases--the National Plan and Provider Enumeration System and the Provider Enrollment, Chain and Ownership System--are extremely inaccurate, according to the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Inspector General.

Providers wishing to enroll in Medicare first must apply to get a national provider identifier through NPPES, and then enroll through PECOS. Accurate, complete and consistent data on both system helps ensure the integrity of health programs, OIG notes in a new report, and the office has previously found ongoing problems with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ oversight of provider data.

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