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Is Sweden Doomed to Repeat U.S. Errors?: Fraud in Sweden's Health Care System

NCJ Number
International Criminal Justice Review Volume: 22 Issue: 1 Dated: March 2012 Pages: 24-42
Paul Jesilow
Date Published
March 2012
19 pages
This article discusses health-care fraud in Sweden.
Frauds committed by recipients of public insurance and providers of health care are stealing millions of kronor from Swedish taxpayers each year. Privatization in Sweden's health care will likely increase the losses from fraud. Vårdval, Sweden's latest method to transfer the delivery of health services from public entities to private ones, focuses on primary care and is an attempt to secure "seamless" treatment for patients at a nearby location and hopefully reduce health care costs. But the new policy also creates numerous opportunities for unscrupulous providers and patients to steal from Sweden's taxpayer-supported programs. The intent of the current research was to explore the impacts of privatization on the regulation of Swedish health care. One of those impacts, it is argued, will be a need for Swedish officials to attend to a growing crime problem. Lessons from the United States suggest that government attention to the problem at this early stage is needed to prevent the thefts from growing and becoming a major drain on Sweden's budget, as they are in the United States. (Published Abstract)