INDIANAPOLIS--A whistleblower who saw what they believed to be fraud happening, and filed papers to let the government know, may have helped the taxpayers and Medicare, get back nearly $3 million. American Senior Communities will be paying the money back, plus about $2 million more, said the U.S. Attorney’s office, Wednesday.
American Senior Communities provides skilled nursing and long-term care for throughout Indiana.
The whistleblower discovered the company was double-dipping, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorny. The company was charging Medicare directly for therapy services that people in hospice care were getting, though the patients’ Medicare had already been billed for those services.
The total came out to $2,795,522.33 and ASC has agreed to pay $5,591,044.66 to the United States. That’s because the government is allowed under the False Claims Act to charge up to three times the amount of the fraud, plus fines.
The whistleblower is also entitled to 15 to 25 percent of the recovered amount, as an incentive to get people to report fraud.
“Whistleblowers are critical to protecting public funds from fraud, waste, and abuse,” said U.S. Attorney Zachary A. Myers. “Health care providers who submit false claims or otherwise violate state and federal regulations when billing the United States Government will face consequences.”