A massive computer crash that destroyed hundreds of the state attorney general's confidential documents may prevent scores of Medicaid fraud prosecutions and has revealed serious problems with a newly expanded state outsourcing of computer services.
As much as 50 percent of the Tyler Medicaid fraud division's files were destroyed in July when a server being repaired by a state vendor wouldn't restart. The scope of the damage is in dispute.
In an apparent oversight, the documents lost were not backed up – meaning that evidence crucial to convicting dishonest health-care providers who ripped off the state's health insurance program for the poor may never be recovered. E-mails and other records obtained by The Dallas Morning News indicate some Tyler investigators lost up to 90 percent of their open case files.
"In spite of earlier assurances, the destruction of critical data has, in fact, occurred," First Assistant Attorney General Kent Sullivan wrote Monday in an e-mail to Brian Rawson, chief of the Department of Information Resources. Attorney General Greg Abbott's office "cannot afford to risk a reoccurrence of this event."
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