Facilities settle in double-billing case

March 8, 2013 at 11:59 PM   |   0 comments

HOUSTON, March 8 (UPI) -- Two Texas healthcare facilities accused of more than $12.3 million in wrongful reimbursements agreed to a settlement, federal prosecutors said.

Kenneth Magidson, U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Texas, said the Children's Physician Services of South Texas and Radiology Associates have agreed to pay to settle claims they violated the False Claims Act and the Texas Medicaid Fraud Prevention Act from 2002 to 2007.

Children's Physician Services of South Texas, a part of the Driscoll Health System in Corpus Christi, Texas, agreed to pay $1.5 million, while Radiology Associates, an independent physician group serving the Driscoll Health System, would pay $800,000 to settle claims they billed and received payment twice for the professional reading and interpretation of genetic ultrasounds, Magidson said in a release Tuesday.

"Improper double billing by healthcare providers defrauds the government funded healthcare programs, adds to the government's deficit and, most importantly, reduces the funds available to meet the patients' medical needs," Magidson said in a statement. "In addition to yielding a substantial recovery for taxpayers, this settlement should serve notice to healthcare providers that taxpayers will not tolerate, much less accept, paying twice for services rendered to them."

The settlement involved alleged Children's Physician Services of South Texas billed and received payment for Radiology Associates' professional services and, without disclosing the payments, directed Radiology Associates to bill and receive payment for the same professional services, Magidson said.

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