Feds Close Tax-Funded Viagra Pipeline for Sex Offenders

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A federal agency has begun notifying all 50 states that they don’t have to offer Medicaid-funded Viagra to sex offenders, a step taken after it was discovered that more than 400 convicted sex offenders in New York and Florida were reimbursed for the erectile dysfunction drug. The Associated Press reported that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services acted swiftly Monday, one day after the New York comptroller’s office said audits found that 198 rapists and other sex offenders in the state received Medicaid-reimbursed Viagra after their convictions.

The report sent the Bush administration scrambling to close the loophole, which apparently was in effect nationwide. Florida Attorney General Charlie Crist noted that Medicaid has paid $93,000 to provide Viagra to 218 sex offenders in that state over the last four years. A federal spokesman said confusion over a 1998 federal directive apparently resulted in Medicaid-paid Viagra for sex offenders.

Link: http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/national/AP-Sex-Offenders-Viagra.html

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