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US charges 107 medical professionals with $452m in fraudulent bills to Medicare

BMJ 2012; 344 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.e3278 (Published 08 May 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;344:e3278
  1. Janice Hopkins Tanne
  1. 1New York

US government officials have charged 107 medical professionals with cheating Medicare, the government insurance programme for elderly and disabled people, with false bills worth a total of nearly half a billion dollars.

Doctors, nurses, licensed clinical social workers, healthcare company owners, a pharmacist, medical office managers, and patient recruiters in seven US cities have been charged with fraudulently billing Medicare for submitting $452m (£280m; €350m) in services that were not needed or not provided. The charges were announced by the US attorney general, Eric Holder; the health and human services secretary, Kathleen Sebelius; the Justice Department’s Criminal Division; and the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI).

Court documents allege that in many cases kickbacks were …

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