Nery Cowan, a consultant and Medicare biller for Greater Miami Behavioral Healthcare Center Inc., pleaded guilty in connection with a $63 million health care fraud and money laundering scheme. Behavioral Healthcare is a now-defunct Miami-area partial hospitalization program (PHP) that purported to provide intensive treatment for severe mental illness. Specifically, Cowan directed the payment of kickbacks to patient brokers and others in exchange for Medicare beneficiary referrals and admitted concealing the kickback payments to shell companies owned by “patient brokers” who, on behalf of Greater Miami, solicited Medicare beneficiaries from assisted living facilities, halfway houses and drug courts located throughout the Southern District of Florida. Cowan and her co-conspirators disguised these monthly kickbacks as “outreach” or “marketing” payments through HNB-Stell Care Inc., a sham staffing company. DOJ
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