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Texas hospital owner charged with Medicare fraud

A 61-year-old man from Cedar Hill has been indicted for Medicare fraud. The indictment was handed down by a federal grand jury through the court in the Eastern District of Texas, which is based in Tyler. It alleges that the man, an owner of five hospitals, conspired to commit nine separate counts of health care fraud totalling more than $1 million.

The hospitals owned by the accused are the Shelby Regional Medical Center, Renaissance Terrell Hospital, the Central Texas Hospital, Cozby Germany Hospital, and the Community General Hospital.

The man has denied the charges. He posted a $25,000 bond, set by U.S. Magistrate John D. Love in an April court appearance. In addition to posting the bond, the man surrendered his United States passport to the court and was released from custody.

The case against him, according to Eastern District of Texas U.S. Attorney, John M. Bales, alleges that the man reported fraudulent health care charges to both Medicare and Medicaid, totalling over $1.1 million. He did so, according to the allegations, by using the provider numbers for Medicare and Medicaid that had been issued to the hospitals he owns.

The indictment contends that the man instituted a system to submit fraudulent reimbursement claims to Medicare and Medicaid. He is said to have done so in conspiracy with others between April 2010 and April 2013.

According to the indictment, all of the conspirators changed or altered diagnostic coding and billing. Because of doing so, they received over $375,000 in fraudulent claims.

The case, which is still under investigation, has involved collaboration between the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General, the FBI, the U.S. Postal Service, and the Texas Attorney General's Medicaid Fraud Unit.

Staff members at the accused's Central Texas Hospital in Cameron say that the hospital's operation is not affected by the case, and it is still receiving Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements.

If you have Medicare fraud legal troubles, it will be critical to find an attorney who is experienced with Medicare fraud. He or she will be able to provide the qualified representation and sound legal advice you need.

Source:  KWTX.com, "Central Texas Doctor Faces Federal Fraud Indictment" Paul J. Gately, Jul. 16, 2013

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