Tuesday, October 03, 2006
Home Healthcare Agency agrees to pay $6 Million to settle Fraud and Overpayment Claims
The Visiting Nurse Association of Brooklyn (VNAB) has agreed to pay nearly $3.8 million in damages and penalties in two civil health care fraud cases and more than $2.3 million in overpayments, according to a press release by the U.S. Department of Justice.
In the first case, the U.S. intervened and filed its own complaint in an action originally brought by a private party under the civil False Claims Act. Without admitting liability, VNAB will pay $1,886,704 to settle allegations that it improperly characterized various expenditures in its annual Medicare and Medicaid cost reports for 1991 through 2000, and obtained reimbursement for costs that were not allowable. These costs included unauthorized bonuses paid to VNAB executives, excess pension contributions made for the benefit of certain executives, personal travel costs, and attorney fees expended in defense of the fraud litigation. The settlement amount includes double damages incurred by the Medicare program and double damages for the federal portion of the Medicaid frauds.
The second case was brought by VNAB and challenged the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) reduction of its Medicare reimbursement rate for home health aide services in 1995. The government filed counterclaims under the False Claims Act based on VNAB’s reporting of inflated data and false statements in its cost reports for 1995 and 1996. The district court upheld HHS’s rate reduction and granted summary judgment to the U.S. on its counterclaims. Subsequently, the federal government and VNAB reached a settlement. With respect to the court case, VNAB is paying $1,892,703, which represents double damages less amounts already recouped by HHS through the administrative overpayment process. In addition, VNAB is paying $2,304,182 to settle potential administrative claims for 1989 through 1994, and has agreed to withdraw related actions and administrative appeals relating to the computation of its Medicare reimbursement rates for home health aide services for 1989 through 2000.
Posted by Quitam Help Admin on 10/03 at 02:46 PM
Horizon West companies to pay $14.7 Million for False Claims to Medicare
Horizon West Inc. and its wholly owned subsidiary, Horizon West Healthcare Inc., have agreed to pay the U.S. $14.7 million to settle allegations that the companies violated the civil False Claims Act, the Justice Department announced today. California-based Horizon runs a nursing home chain with approximately 30 facilities in California and Utah.
According to the Justice Department press release, the companies were charged with falsely inflating the number of nursing hours spent on Medicare patients when reporting their costs to Medicare from 1991 to 1998. The $14.7 million settlement by the defendants ends the case. Click the following link to read the details of this qui tam case from the Justice Department’s press release.
Posted by Quitam Help Admin on 10/03 at 08:57 AM
Sunday, October 01, 2006
Once High-Flying Omnicare faces Many Troubles
Kentucky Post staff writer Greg Paeth reported yesterday about the fall of Omnicare, the Kentucky-based medical services company that has been charged with Medicaid fraud in three states and whose chief executive has been indicted. Click the following link to read about this one-time Fortune 500 company’s fall.
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Posted by Quitam Help Admin on 10/01 at 08:45 AM