We can only guess at what portion of the enormous cost of medical care in this country can be attributed to fraud, but we can take some comfort in the fact that the government is actively pursuing the criminals who are elevating expenses for the rest of us.
A joint health care fraud strike force (the Health Care Fraud Prevention and Enforcement Action Team – HEAT) shut down a massive Medicare fraud operation in Miami which netted $83 million since 2003.
The American Therapeutic Corp. and its sister companies faked medication and care charts and paid owners of assisted living facilities and halfway houses to bring patients to their mental health centers for therapy sessions which were never held and from which the patients would not have benefitted even if given. Employees falsified medical records to make it look like the patients had a mental illness and needed medication and therapy.
Let’s hope that the drive to cut back on government spending does not include reductions in law enforcement in the area of Medicare and Medicaid fraud.