The United States Department of Justice is cracking down on health care fraud in the country. A recent DOJ investigation has led to two doctors and six other individuals facing health care fraud charges that could result in very serious consequences.
All eight people have been charged with health care fraud or conspiracy to commit health care fraud. The charges stem from an investigation that alleges one doctor was using fraudulent billing practices and making referrals to buy durable medical equipment even though there was no medical necessity. The DOJ said the doctor's fraudulent practices resulted in Medicare losing roughly $24 million.
The DOJ did not elaborate on the other accusations against the other individuals charged in the case. However, in addition to another doctor being charged, the other individuals were owners and employees at medical supply companies used in the alleged Medicare fraud scheme.
Medicare fraud charges should be taken very seriously. These defendants could face very serious punishments for their role in the scheme if they are found guilty or even if they accept a plea deal.
This is not the first Medicare fraud case in California this year and it probably won't be the last. The DOJ is using Medicare Fraud Strike Force operations in the state to investigate possible Medicare fraud schemes in an effort to crack down and stop Medicare fraud. Like this case shows, many Medicare fraud cases often rely on evidence of fraudulent billing practices or fraudulent referrals to other clinics or medical device companies. This type of evidence can have a significant impact on any pending charges physicians or owners may face so it is wise to know what evidence may be used against you to help your attorney defend your case.
Source: The Daily Breeze, "Doctors, others charged in Los Angeles in $32 million Medicare fraud probe," May 14, 2014