The Department of Justice announced that the owner of a Miami-area pharmacy has pleaded guilty for his role in Medicare prescription fraud scheme involving approximately $8.4 million in improper billings. Specifically, the pharmacy owner pleaded guilty to agreeing to pay illegal health care kickbacks to Medicare beneficiaries in exchange for a promise that the beneficiaries would fill their prescription as his pharmacy. He also admitted that he submitted claims to Medicare for expensive prescription medications that his pharmacy never purchased.
Arena Event Services, Inc., doing business as Arena Americas, has agreed to a settlement with the United States to resolve allegations that it wrongfully obtained small business set-aside contracts with the Department of Defense. Through its investigation under the False Claims Act, the Department of Justice concluded that Arena Americas—which did not qualify as a small business—paid another company, Military Training Solutions LLC (MTS), to bid on and obtain small business contracts that ultimately would be performed by Arena Americas. As a result, the United States contends that millions of dollars in defense contracting work went to Arena Americas instead of to a legitimate small business.
A federal jury convicted a Texas hospital administrator, Starsky Bomer, this week of conspiracy to commit healthcare fraud and receive healthcare kickbacks, as well as violating the Anti-Kickback Statute. From 2011-2013, Bomer and others acted in a scheme to defraud Medicare by submitting approximately $16 million in false claims. The scheme involved paying illegal bribes and kickbacks to group home owners and patient recruiters in exchange for sending Medicare beneficiaries to Atrium Medical Center and Pristine Healthcare. To read more click here.
At the annual Taxpayers Against Fraud awards dinner in Washington D.C., Karin Bernsten was named the Whistleblower of the Year. Berntsen blew the whistle on Prime Healthcare, the fifth largest healthcare system in the country, exposing practices of fraudulent billing and administrators pressuring physicians to raise inpatient admission rates. In August of 2018, Prime Healthcare settled the claims against it for $65 million. To read more click here.
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