Employment Screening 101: The OIG and GSA Search-Part 12

Jason Morris

In the employment screening business sometimes we are faced with industries that require very specific searches. One of these searches is called an OIG (Office of Inspector General) GSA (General Services Administration) Search. Both of these are government disbarment list searches.

What does this mean?

In a nutshell, various industries are required to verify that a candidate is not on a government disbarment list of firms and individuals excluded by the Federal government from receiving federal contracts or federally approved subcontracts and from certain types of federal financial and non financial assistance and benefits.

According to the Government Services Administration (GSA) Website:

The EPLS (Excluded Parties Lists System) was established to ensure agencies solicit offers from, award contracts, grants, or financial or non-financial assistance and benefits to, and consent to subcontracts with responsible contractors only and not allow a party to participate in any affected program if any Executive department or agency has debarred, suspended, or otherwise excluded (to the extent specified in the exclusion action) that party from participation in an affected program.

Reference FAR Subpart 9.4 (Procurement Programs) and Executive Orders 12549 and 12689 and the Government-wide Nonprocurement Suspension and Debarment Common Rule [68 FR 66533] (Nonprocurement Programs) provide the guidance for using EPLS.

The EPLS is a Federal government system maintained by GSA as required by FAR Subpart 9.4 and Executive Orders 12549 and 12689. EPLS data is received and maintained by Federal debarring/excluding agencies only.

According to the Office of Inspector General (OIG) website:

For many years the Congress of the United States has worked diligently to protect the health and welfare of the nation’s elderly and poor by implementing legislation to prevent certain individuals and businesses from participating in Federally-funded health care programs. The OIG, under this Congressional mandate, established a program to exclude individuals and entities affected by these various legal authorities, contained in sections 1128 and 1156 of the Social Security Act, and maintains a list of all currently excluded parties called the List of Excluded Individuals/Entities.

Bases for exclusion include convictions for program-related fraud and patient abuse, licensing board actions and default on Health Education Assistance Loans.

The effect of an exclusion (not being able to participate) is:

· No payment will be made by any Federal health care program for any items or services furnished, ordered, or prescribed by an excluded individual or entity. Federal health care programs include Medicare, Medicaid, and all other plans and programs that provide health benefits funded directly or indirectly by the United States (other than the Federal Employees Health Benefits Plan). For exclusions implemented prior to August 4, 1997, the exclusion covers the following Federal health care programs: Medicare (Title XVIII), Medicaid (Title XIX), Maternal and Child Health Services Block Grant (Title V), Block Grants to States for Social Services (Title XX) and State Children’s Health Insurance (Title XXI) programs.

· No program payment will be made for anything that an excluded person furnishes, orders, or prescribes. This payment prohibition applies to the excluded person, anyone who employs or contracts with the excluded person, any hospital or other provider where the excluded person provides services, and anyone else. The exclusion applies regardless of who submits the claims and applies to all administrative and management services furnished by the excluded person.

· There is a limited exception to exclusions for the provision of certain emergency items or services not provided in a hospital emergency room. See regulations at 42 CFR 1001.1901(c)

Check with your employment screening firm to see if an OIG or GSA search is relevant to your industry.

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Jason Morris

President & Chief Operating Officer at EmployeeScreenIQ
A veteran screening and risk management professional, Jason Morris founded EmployeeScreenIQ in 1999 and acts as the company’s chief operating officer and president. Morris is a frequent speaker delivering captivating, interactive discussions on background checks, global screening, recruitment and staffing. He educates audiences in best practice initiatives as they relate to organizational employment screening programs. Morris has been quoted in numerous business and industry publications including The Wall Street Journal, MSNBC.com, USA Today, New York Times, among others. He is also a licensed private investigator in the states of Ohio, Illinois, New Jersey, Texas, Arizona and Nevada.
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