DOJ charges 24 in $1.2B+ medical device kickback scheme — 5 insights

Eric Oliver -   Print  | Email

The Department of Justice charged 24 individuals in connection with a massive kickback scheme that resulted in more than $1.2 billion in losses.

What you should know:

1. The DOJ charged defendants across the U.S. They allegedly all participated in a kickback scheme concerning medically unnecessary durable medical equipment braces. The defendants include executives in telemedicine companies, owners of durable medical equipment companies and three licensed medical professionals.

2. The defendants allegedly used an international call center that advertised to Medicare beneficiaries. The call centers attempted to get the patients to receive DME medical braces at little or no cost, regardless of need.

3. The call centers would then pay kickbacks to telemedicine companies, who paid kickbacks to physicians to receive prescriptions for the braces. The call center would sell the prescriptions to the brace companies, who then billed Medicare.

4. The entire operation caused more than $1 billion in losses, $1.7 billion in claims and $900 million in payments.

5. FBI and HHS' Office of Inspector General led the investigation.

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