FRAUD: Dialysis Chain Settles Federal Case for $500M
The Justice Department has reached its largest health care fraud settlement ever -- almost $500 million -- with its case against a national kidney dialysis provider, the Washington Post reports. The agreement with National Medical Care Inc., which operates hundreds of treatment centers around the country, includes a $101 million criminal fine, in addition to civil penalties and restitution for violations involving Medicare and other government health care programs. Included in the settlement are allegations that the company charged Medicare for hundreds of thousands of unnecessary tests for renal disease patients and that company officials paid kickbacks to obtain referrals for lab business. National is a subsidiary of the German firm Fresenius Medicare Care AG, the world's largest provider of dialysis services. Justice Department officials are expected to announce the agreement at a news briefing today (Vise/Adams, 1/19).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.