Mental health industry watchdog stays alert to scammers profiting from COVID-19 fears. Concerned about patients being defrauded when seeking mental health treatment, CCHR launches newsletter…
CCHR Continues to Expose Patient Abuse & Fraud in a $50 Billion Per Year For-Profit Mental Health Industry By CCHR International The Mental Health Industry Watchdog…
It’s getting personal now. In a shift still evolving, federal enforcers are targeting individual executives in health care fraud cases that used to be aimed at impersonal corporations.
The new tactic is raising the anxiety level — and risks — for corporate honchos at drug companies, medical device manufacturers, nursing home chains and other major health care enterprises that deal with Medicare and Medicaid.
The first Miami defendant in the nation’s largest mental healthcare fraud case pleaded guilty to paying millions of dollars in kickbacks in exchange for Medicare patients who didn’t need the costly therapy.Her job as marketing director for a Miami-based mental healthcare chain was to bring in the patients and nobody did their job better than Margarita Acevedo. Investigators say she paid millions of dollars in kickbacks to South Florida assisted-living facilities, halfway houses and recruiters to supply thousands of Medicare beneficiaries to American Therapeutic Corp.’s chain of seven clinics — patients who didn’t need the costly treatment.
On Thursday, Acevedo, 41, of Southwest Miami-Dade, pleaded guilty to conspiring to pay kickbacks in exchange for patients and conspiring to bilk between $100 million and $200 million from Medicare, in the largest mental healthcare fraud case in the country. Her change of plea in a Miami federal court makes Acevedo the first defendant among 24 indicted since last fall to admit playing a role in American Therapeutic’s “massive fraud scheme” against the taxpayer-funded healthcare program for seniors and the disabled, according to court records. She faces between 12 and 15 years in prison at her mid-July sentencing, according to sentencing guidelines.
Read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/04/08/2158019/first-miami-defendant-in-nations.html#ixzz1JWM85A6L
Federal inspectors want to prevent drug-company executives from doing business with the U.S. government when their companies are convicted of Medicare fraud.
Under guidelines from the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Inspector General, executives can be barred from contracting with federal health programs when they knew, or if the inspector general concludes they should have known, about fraud at their firms. The guidelines were posted Oct. 20 on the office’s Web site. Authorities have been spurred by large settlements, said Robert DeConti, chief of the administrative and civil remedies branch in the inspector general’s Office of Counsel. GlaxoSmithKline was ordered to pay $750 million on Oct. 26 for sale of defective drugs, and Pfizer agreed to pay $2.3 billion in September 2009 for fraudulent marketing of medicine.