facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Doctor guilty in Medicare fraud scheme

Aug. 23, 2011 at 9:35 PM   |   Comments

MIAMI, Aug. 23 (UPI) -- A Miami-area doctor pleaded guilty Tuesday to his role in a scheme to bilk Medicare out of about $25 million, U.S.prosecutors said.

Jose Nunez, 63, who owns two medical offices, prescribed medically unnecessary services, including home health and therapy prescriptions, care plans and medical certifications, from about January 2006 until about March 2009 in exchange for kickbacks and bribes, the Department of Justice, the FBI and the Department of Health and Human Services announced.

Nunez provided home healthcare and therapy prescription referrals to ABC Home Health Care Inc. and Florida Home Health Care Providers Inc. In plea documents, he admitted he knew the Miami home healthcare agencies billed Medicare for costly physical therapy and home healthcare services that were unnecessary or never provided.

He received kickbacks and bribes from nurses, patient recruiters, and the owners and operators of ABC and Florida Home Health, court documents say.

Nunez pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Joan A. Lenard in Miami to one count of conspiracy to commit healthcare fraud.

As part of the scheme, plea documents show, he falsified patient files with descriptions of non-existent medical conditions for the Medicare beneficiaries, including hand tremors, unsteady gait and poor vision.

Sentencing is set for Dec. 5. Conspiracy to commit healthcare fraud carries a maximum prison sentence of 10 years. Nunez also faces fines and forfeiture of any property or proceeds derived from the scheme.

© 2011 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Recommended UPI Stories
Featured UPI Collection
trending
Celebrity Couples of 2014 [PHOTOS]

Celebrity Couples of 2014 [PHOTOS]

Most Popular
1
Hamas executes 18 it claims are Israeli informers, takes credit for kidnapping Israeli teens
2
Malaysia Airlines MH17 victims' bodies arrive in Kuala Lumpur
3
Jodi Arias granted delay in death penalty retrial
4
4 firefighters injured in 'Ice Bucket Challenge'
5
Robert Hansen, notorious Alaska serial killer, dead at 75
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback