Payment Integrity: What Motivates Entities Making Payments and Claimants to Optimize Ongoing Payment Integrity Efforts?

September 2017
Topics: Payment Integrity, Fraud, Data Analytics, Government Agency Operations, Management
Gary L. Ingber, The MITRE Corporation
Dr. Shelley A. Kirkpatrick, The MITRE Corporation
Gordon C. Milbourn III, The MITRE Corporation
W. Bruce Shirk, The MITRE Corporation
Jonathan R. Stehle, The MITRE Corporation
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According to the Office of Management and Budget, the federal government annually makes more than $3 trillion in payments of all kinds, the great majority of which are proper. However, in fiscal year 2016, federal agencies estimated that they made more than $144 billion in improper payments (nearly 4.7 percent of all payments), representing the equivalent of the fifth largest federal agency. The amount of reported improper payments nearly tripled over the last decade, and these estimates do not include all programs.

The MITRE Corporation, a not-for-profit corporation that operates federally funded research and development centers on behalf of federal government sponsors, conducted this independent study of the motivators of federal Payment Integrity1 in conjunction with its charter to help address significant government-wide problems. The study addresses the following issues.

  • What motivates and enables federal agencies—the organizations as a whole and their individual employees—and entities acting on their behalf (for example, states, grantees) to optimize their ongoing Payment Integrity efforts?
  • What motivates claimants—individuals and organizations filing benefits claims, tax returns, commercial invoices, etc.—to be accurate and not make errors or commit fraud?

This study describes the impact of these issues and recommends 11 actions for broader, more cross-government approaches to motivating federal agencies, entities acting on their behalf, and claimants to ensure Payment Integrity.

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