Major Medicare Fraud Crackdown In 3 States

The Associated Press: "Federal agents arrested 26 suspects in three states Tuesday, including a doctor and nurses, in a major crackdown on Medicare fraud totaling $61 million in separate scams. Arrests in Miami, Brooklyn and Detroit included a Florida doctor accused of running a $40 million home health care scheme that falsely listed patients as blind diabetics so that he could bill for twice-daily nurse visits. The U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services said the indicted suspects lined up bogus patients and otherwise billed Medicare for unnecessary medical equipment, physical therapy and HIV infusions" (Kennedy, 12/15).

CNN: "Federal Investigators consider Miami to be ground zero for health care fraud. The inspector general found that 52 percent of all Medicare home health care expenses above $100,000 were in Miami-Dade County, while only 2 percent of Medicare home health care beneficiaries actually live in that county (Chernoff, 12/15). 

The Wall Street Journal/Dow Jones: "The U.S. government has been cracking down on Medicare fraud this year, in part to make sure federal funds aren't being lost at a time of burgeoning deficits" (Miller, 12/15). 

Tampa Tribune: "Tampa was chosen because of the number of false claims that have been filed in the area, authorities said" (12/15).

This is part of Kaiser Health News' Daily Report - a summary of health policy coverage from more than 300 news organizations. The full summary of the day's news can be found here and you can sign up for e-mail subscriptions to the Daily Report here. In addition, our staff of reporters and correspondents file original stories each day, which you can find on our home page.