According to the AARP Medicare Supplements website article “More Than 100 Charged Nationwide With Medicare Fraud” obtained from the Los Angeles Times, 111 people in 9 cities across the US had criminal charges brought against them for Medicare fraud. The charges were brought by the federal government’s Medicare Fraud Task Force, and officials are saying it’s the largest federal healthcare fraud bust ever.
Criminal charges were brought upon a variety of professions including doctors, nurses, and healthcare company executives. Officials said the defendants stole over $225 million in false billing schemes which included fraudulent claims, identity theft, kickback operations, and money laundering. The number of arrests was so large that it took over 700 federal agents from the FBI and the Health and Human Services Department to gather up the suspects, and serve another 16 search warrants across the country in connection to the investigations.
The inspector general for the Health and Human Services Department, Daniel R. Levinson says they will no longer tolerate criminals stealing from Medicare patients and the taxpayers. Not only does Medicare fraud affect Medicare recipients, but health insurance quotes can increase for everyone making the health care system not as affordable. Hopefully this major crackdown will send a huge message.