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Medicaid

This archive displays posts tagged as relevant to Medicaid and fraud in the Medicaid program. You may also be interested in our pages:

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April 12, 2022

Physician Partners of America LLC (PPOA), its founder Rodolfo Gari, and its former chief medical officer Dr. Abraham Rivera, have agreed to pay $24.5 million to settle allegations of violating the Stark Law, False Claims Act, and Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act (FIRREA).  The settlement resolved claims by whistleblowers Donald Haight, Dawn Baker, Dr. Harold Cho, Dr. Venus Dookwah-Roberts, and Dr. Michael Lupi, all currently or formerly employed with PPOA.  According to the whistleblowers and the government, PPOA allegedly billed Medicare and Medicaid for medically unnecessary testing, paid illegal kickbacks to its physician employees, and made false statements on a loan from the Paycheck Protection Program.  USAO MDFL

April 6, 2022

Florida hospital chain BayCare Health System Inc. will pay $20 million to resolve claims that the company knowingly caused false claims for federal Medicaid matching funds to be submitted to the United States by making improper, non-bona fide cash donations to the Juvenile Welfare Board of Pinellas County (JWB) knowing that the funds would be transferred by JWB to the State of Florida’s Agency for Health Care Administration for Florida’s Medicaid Program, which would trigger a corresponding federal matching payment.  The prohibition on non-bona fide donations ensures that states are paying a share of Medicaid payments; the non-bona fide donations increased Medicaid payments received by BayCare without any actual expenditure of state or local funds and enabled BayCare to recoup its original donations to JWB and also receive federal matching funds. The case was initiated with a qui tam complaint filed by Larry Bomar, who will receive $5 million as an award for initiating the whistleblower action. DOJ; MD FL

March 24, 2022

A New York woman who defrauded the state out of millions of dollars has been sentenced to 3 to 9 years in prison and ordered to pay more than $4 million in restitution.  According to the Attorney General’s Office, Leslie Montgomery lured low-income New Yorkers to Health Living Community Center under the guise of helping them find housing, then used their information to submit false claims to a Medicaid-funded managed care organization.  The claims for custom-molded back braces were medically unnecessary and not requested by or provided to the intended recipients.  Montgomery then hid the illegal proceeds through multiple shell companies, including LCM Livery P/U, Inc.  NY AG

March 8, 2022

Eugene Sisco, III of Kentucky, the owner and operator of several medication assisted treatment (MAT) clinics for opioid addiction, has been sentenced to over 10 years in prison and ordered to pay $5.7 million in restitution, after being convicted of healthcare fraud.  Sisco was found to have tricked Medicaid patients into paying hundreds of dollars in cash each month for MAT services which he later billed and was reimbursed by Medicaid for.  Sisco’s laboratory, Toxperts, LLC, was also found to have billed Medicare for medically unnecessary urine drug tests, causing a loss of over $2 million to CMS.  USAO EDKY

March 7, 2022

Pharmaceutical company Mallinckrodt ARD LLC will pay $260 million to resolve allegations that it violated the False Claims Act in the sale and marketing of its drug H.P. Acthar Gel.  The government intervened in whistleblower actions alleging that Mallinckrodt and its predecessor Questcor Pharmaceuticals Inc. knowingly underpaid state Medicaid programs by improperly calculating amounts it owed under the Medicaid Drug Rebate Program, and unlawfully used a foundation as a conduit to subsidize co-payments.  With respect to the Medicaid rebate claims, which represent $234.7 million of the settlement, defendants were alleged to have calculated rebate amounts as if Acthar was a “new drug” first marketed in 2013, rather than a drug that had been approved since 1952.  By using 2013 for Acthar’s Base Date Average Manufacturer Price (AMP), the company ignored price increases prior to 2013 and fraudulently reduced Acthar drug rebates.  With respect to the copayment fraud claims, which represent $26.3 million of the settlement, defendants were alleged to have violated the Anti-Kickback Statute by subsidizing copayments through payments to three funds that Mallinckrodt had a foundation set up to induce Medicare-reimbursed purchases of Acthar, using the subsidies to counteract doctor and patient concerns about the drug’s high cost.  The whistleblower in the Medicaid rebate case, James Landolt will receive an award of $24.7 million, representing 20% of the $123.6 million federal share of that settlement; the relator’s share for the state share of the settlement was not announced.  The whistleblowers in the copayment case, Charles Strunck and Lisa Pratta, will receive an award of $4.9 million, representing 19% of that settlement.  The settlement includes a five-year corporate integrity agreement (CIA) with monitoring provisions.  DOJ; USAO MA; USAO EDPA

March 7, 2022

Redwood Toxicology Laboratory has agreed to pay nearly $4.8 million to settle allegations that the California-based urine drug testing service overcharged the Connecticut Medicaid program for certain laboratory services, in violation of Connecticut’s “Most Favored Nation” regulation, which provides that the state should not be charged more than the lowest price charged to third parties.  The settlement covered claims submitted between January 2015 through February 2018.  USAO CT

Catch of the Week: Feds Shut The Door on an Uncommon Fraud Scheme involving New York Indigent Care Pool

Posted  02/3/22
The Southern District of New York announced a $12.9 million settlement with healthcare provider The Door, which provided services to uninsured youth for which it received reimbursement from New York State’s Indigent Care Pool.  The settlement demonstrates the importance of whistleblowers, including the two that brought this case and stand to share in up to 25% of what the government collected, in helping to shut...

February 2, 2022

New York healthcare provider The Door - A Center for Alternatives has agreed to pay $12.9 million to resolve claims that it submitted false claims for reimbursement to New York's Indigent Care Pool, which is funded by Medicaid.  The Door was required to submit annual cost reports to New York reporting figures including the number of "threshold visits" to its ambulatory diagnostic and treatment center.  A qui tam case initiated by two whistleblowers alleged that defendant knowingly inflated the number of threshold visits to increase payments.   SDNY

February 1, 2022

Two North Carolina medical providers will pay nearly $1.5 million combined for submitting false claims to the Medicaid program. Knowles, Smith, & Associates LLP will pay $1,150,000 to resolve allegations spanning five years of failure to monitor their anesthesia billing by not providing services billed, administering medically unnecessary procedures, or failing to maintain sufficient supporting documentation. Stacy Benton Lewis, M.D., and the Center for Women’s Health, P.A. will pay $340,000 to resolve false billing allegations covering a four-year period for submitting claims for complex visits that did not occur. NC DOJ

January 28, 2022

Hayat Pharmacy agreed to pay over $2 Million to resolve allegations that it submitted false claims to Medicare and Medicaid for certain prescription medications from its 23 locations. The government alleged Hayat Pharmacy submitted false claims for two prescription medications, a topical cream consisting of iodoquinol, hydrocortisone, and aloe, and a multivitamin with the trade name Azesco.  Hayat Pharmacy allegedly switched Medicaid and Medicare patients from lower cost medications to the higher cost medications without any medical need and/or without a valid prescription. As part of the settlement, Hayat Pharmacy agreed to conduct annual training concerning waste, fraud and abuse, and compliance with rules concerning medication switches. USAO WI
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