If true, this is the opposite of person-centered care plus— loads of felonies!
Federal authorities charged the nation’s largest community mental health center Thursday, alleging the Miami-based company billed Medicare $200 million in a scam that preyed on patients with severe dementia and altered their clinical files so the company could charge for more services.
Prosecutors alleged that American Therapeutic Corp. paid the owners of assisted living facilities and halfway houses to force patients to attend programs at their seven mental health centers in south and central Florida. Some patients also cashed in on the scheme by providing their Medicare numbers, while others were “not coherent enough” to demand kickbacks, according to the investigation by the departments of Justice and Health and Human Services.
They tell their story here.
How big a deal is this?
The scope of the alleged Medicare fraud surpassed that of a vast network of Armenian gangsters and their associates charged last week with operating phantom healthcare clinics to try to cheat the federal program out of $163 million.