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Provider Fraud

This archive displays posts tagged as relevant to fraud by healthcare providers. You may also be interested in our pages:

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March 3, 2021

The CEO of a group of medical providers in Michigan and Ohio has been sentenced to 15 years in prison and ordered to pay over $51 million in restitution to Medicare, as well as forfeit over $11.5 million in cash along with multiple properties and a Detroit Pistons season ticket membership, following a trial that found him guilty for his role in an extensive fraud scheme against Medicare.  Mashiyat Rashid, the CEO of Tri-County Wellness Group, allegedly instituted a corporate policy that forced patients—many of whom were addicted to opioids and recruited from homeless shelters and soup kitchens—to submit to medically unnecessary but highly reimbursed back injections in exchange for prescriptions to medically unnecessary opioids.  To implement the policy, Rashid made a point to hire physicians who were willing to put profit over patient care, further incentivizing them by offering to split reimbursements with them.  Yet according to trial testimony, many of the patients did not want, need, or benefit from the painful back injections, which left some of them suffering from adverse conditions, including open holes in their back.  Rashid is the second defendant to be sentenced in this case; twenty-one other defendants, including two physicians, have been convicted so far. DOJ

March 2, 2021

Medical practice Allergy and Asthma Associates Inc., in Roanoke, Virginia, will pay $2.1 million to resolve allegations that it fraudulently billed Medicare and Medicaid for asthma treatments.  AAA treated patients with Xolair, an asthma treatment sold in single-use vials, and billed government healthcare programs for the entire vial when, in fact, they were splitting vials between different patients.  USAO WDVA

February 25, 2021

Texas Center for Orthopedic and Spinal Disorders and its owner, osteopath Mark Kuper, have agreed to a judgment of $11.2 million to resolve claims arising from their fraudulent billing of government healthcare programs.  Kuper also pleaded guilty to healthcare fraud, and was sentenced to 10 years in prison.  Defendants admitted that they submitted claims for services that were never rendered, including claims for one-on-one physical therapy pursuant to an individualized plan of care, when patients were actually attending group sessions with an athletic trainer, and claims for 60-minute psychotherapy sessions when patients actually spoke with unqualified individuals for just 15-20 minutes.  In addition, Kuper permitted his wife to use his credentials to issue prescriptions for controlled substances.  The civil investigation was initiated by a qui tam complaint filed by Richard Brown, who will receive 17% of the government’s recovery.  USAO ND TX

February 1, 2021

Florida pain clinics Collier Anesthesia Pain, LLC and Tampa Pain Relief Center, Inc., will together pay $1.7 million to resolve claims that they violated the False Claims Act.  The clinics were alleged to have paid unlawful kickbacks to affiliated surgery centers by waiving copayments for surgical facility fees in order to induce patients to receive injection procedures. In addition, the government contended that the clinics improperly billed for evaluation and management services and psychological testing services.  USAO MD FL

January 28, 2021

Electronic health records vendor athenahealth Inc. will pay $18.25 million to resolve claims brought in two separate whistleblower actions alleging that certain Athena marketing programs provided unlawful remuneration to healthcare providers and others to induce providers to purchase Athena’s EHR systems.  Remuneration to current and prospective customers included all-expenses paid trips to sporting, entertainment, and recreational events, as well as cash payments to customers who referred others to Athena.  In addition, Athena paid other EHR vendors who referred clients to Athena when they were discontinuing their own EHR products and services. The kickbacks allegedly improperly generated sales for Athena while causing healthcare providers to submit false claims to the federal government for incentive payments related to the adoption and “meaningful use” of Athena’s EHR technology. The whistleblowers, Geordie Sanborn, Cheryl Lovell, and William McKusick, will receive a share of the total settlement that remains to be determined.  DOJ; USAO Mass

January 22, 2021

The estate of Dr. Patrick T. Hunter has agreed to pay more than $1.7 million to resolve allegations that the urologist, who passed away in 2019, submitted false claims to Medicare and TRICARE for medically unnecessary procedures and received improper payments for them from the Orlando Center for Outpatient Surgery.  Between 2010 and 2016, Dr. Hunter allegedly performed the lithotripsy procedures, which break up kidney stones, on patients who either did not have kidney stones or were not medically indicated for them.  For initiating the successful qui tam suit, whistleblower Scott Thompson will receive a relator’s share of $385,000.  USAO MDFL

Constantine Cannon and AARP Foundation Represent Advocacy Groups on behalf of Nursing-Home Patients to Ensure Facility Accountability

Posted  01/22/21
nurse checking elderly woman
Constantine Cannon LLP proudly joins the AARP Foundation in representing the National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care and California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform in a lawsuit seeking to roll back a directive undercutting accountability for nursing homes that violate federal standards.  The federal Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987 allows states to recommend to CMS that a non-compliant facility pay civil...

January 19, 2021

Texas-based Allstate Hospice LLC and Verge Home Care LLC and their founders, Onder Ari and Sedat Necipoglu, have paid over $1.8 million to resolve allegations of submitting claims to Medicare that were tainted by improper inducements.  In violation of the Physician Self-Referral Law and False Claims Act, the defendants allegedly set up monthly payments to referring physicians through sham medical directorship agreements, sold interests to five referring physicians in order to provide them with substantial quarterly dividends, and provided other referring physicians with free tickets and travel.  USAO SDTX

Top Ten State Healthcare and Financial Fraud Recoveries of 2020

Posted  01/8/21
person raising the U.S. flag
State and local governments are on the front lines of enforcing anti-fraud laws and play a critical role in ensuring that businesses and individuals are held accountable.  Whistleblowers with information about corporate misconduct involving healthcare, government procurement, financial regulation, and tax may find that state proceedings offer them the best option. More than 30 states have False Claims Acts that...

Top Ten Healthcare Fraud Recoveries of 2020

Posted  01/5/21
Healthcare Fraud
Consistent with the trend in prior years, the bulk of the Justice Department’s fraud and false claims recoveries in 2019 stemmed from healthcare fraud matters, and with the Biden administration eyeing a bigger role for the federal government in our healthcare system, this trend is likely to accelerate. Most of the funds recovered arose from cases originated by whistleblowers under the qui tam provisions of the False...
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