A Florida respiratory equipment supplier has agreed to pay $9.68 million after being accused of violating the False Claims Act. The company admitted to billing portable oxygen contents to Medicare for people who did not use or need them. The company, Rotech, also admitted to billing Medicare regardless of whether the products were ever delivered. The 36-month rental periods were billed to Medicare with no verification that the beneficiaries actually need, wanted or ever received the medical devices. Rotech continued doing so despite knowledge that the practice was ineligible for compensation.
Blowing the Whistle
Rotech’s own employees were the ones to sound the alarm about the Medicare fraud. A billing department worker alert authorities to the fraud. She received $1.65 million in award money as part of the successful lawsuit against Rotech. The company says they are glad to have this phase of their history behind them, with new leadership in place and new policies to prevent future abuse.
Federal authorities say the case resolution serves as a warning to other companies considering billing first and asking questions later. Companies hoping to cut corners and profit off of their relationship with Medicare will be investigated and held accountable for their actions, officials say. Healthcare fraud is not the victimless crime many assume to be. In fact, it costs taxpayers billions of dollars each year.
Unfortunately, there are no surefire ways to catch fraud in action. We rely upon whistleblowers to bravely speak up when they spot unethical behavior. We applaud the employee who did so in this case, and encourage anyone else who spots Medicare fraud to speak up, too.
Contact Attorney Cindra Dowd
Cindra is experienced in whistleblower protection and litigation, and can help you through the legal process of being a whistleblower. Having a dedicated and experienced litigator on your side can help you gain back what you have lost through retaliation.
If you have uncovered improper actions taking place in your company, do not hesitate to contact us so we can assist you in receiving the protection and rewards that you deserve.
Call or Text 757-233-0009