July 13, 2017
Today the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Medicare Fraud Strike Force charged over 400 doctors, nurses and pharmacists across the U. S. with health care fraud schemes involving approximately $1.3 billion in false billings in prescribing and distributing opioids and other dangerous narcotics. The HHS has initiated suspension actions against 295 providers, including doctors, nurses and pharmacists. This is the largest health care fraud enforcement action in Department of Justice history
The multi- agency strike force targeted schemes involving billing Medicare, Medicaid and TRICARE which is a health insurance program for members and veterans of the armed forces and their families for medically unnecessary prescriptions drugs and compounded medications that often were never even purchased and or distributed to patients.
Those charges also involved individuals contributing to the opioid epidemic with a focus on medical professionals involved in the unlawful distribution of opioids and other prescription narcotics. Department of Justice reports that approximately 91 Americans die every day of an opioid related overdose.
In California, 17 individuals are charged for their roles in schemes to defraud Medicare out of approximately $147 million.
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