Government Intervenes in HCR ManorCare False Claims Act Lawsuits By Tod Aronovitz | 05/05/15 | 0 Comment

Alleged deceptive billing practices are at the center of three False Claims Act lawsuits against HCR ManorCare. The U.S. government has intervened in the suits and filed a consolidated complaint against the healthcare provider. Owned by the Carlyle Group, ManorCare is one of the nation’s largest networks of skilled nursing facilities. The firm operates about 281 centers in 30 states, with numerous Florida locations including Kendall, Miami, Plantation, Boynton Beach and West Palm Beach.

The Justice Department announced the government was taking action in these lawsuits as a result of allegations that ManorCare purportedly submitted false claims to Medicare and Tricare on a regular basis for rehabilitation therapy services that were medically unreasonable and unnecessary.

The three consolidated lawsuits were filed under the qui tam, or whistleblower, provisions of the False Claims Act. According to Miami whistleblower attorney Tod Aronovitz, this provision enables private citizens to sue on behalf of the government for false claims of government funds and to receive a share of any recovery. In addition, the False Claims Act permits the government to intervene in these lawsuits, as it has done here.

According to the government’s complaint against ManorCare, the company allegedly exerted pressure on administrators and therapists at the skilled nursing facilities to reach unrealistic financial goals to significantly increase revenues without regard to patients’ actual clinical needs.

As a result, it is alleged that medically unreasonable and unnecessary services were provided to Medicare and Tricare patients. In addition, ManorCare allegedly increased Medicare payments by keeping patients in its facilities when they medically should have been discharged. Administrators and skilled nursing therapists were allegedly threatened with termination if they did not comply and administer additional treatments that would qualify for the highest Medicare payments.

“Today’s action is the result of a robust investigation into alleged false billings submitted to Medicare and Tricare for rehabilitation therapy services that were not necessary for patients,” said Assistant Director in Charge Andrew G. McCabe of the FBI’s Washington, D.C., Field Office. “Healthcare fraud is a top priority for the FBI and we will continue to work closely with federal, state and local law enforcement partners to address vulnerabilities, fraud and abuse in the healthcare industry.”

The cases are captioned United States ex rel. Rubik v. ManorCare, Inc., et al., Case No. 1:09cv13-CMH-HCB (E.D. Va.); United States ex rel. Slough v. HCR ManorCare, et al., Case No. 1:14cv1228 (E.D. Va.); and United States ex rel. Carson v. HCR ManorCare, et al., Case No. 1:11cv1054 (E.D. Va.).

How to Report Miami Medicare Fraud

Healthcare professionals or medical billing employees who have knowledge of questionable Medicare billing practices can file a confidential legal claim under the False Claims Act. By acting as a “whistleblower” in what is known as a “qui tam” lawsuit, a private party may collect up to 30 percent of the amount recovered, depending on how the case is prosecuted.

ARONOVITZ LAW: Miami Whistleblower / Qui Tam Law Firm

The Miami Qui Tam law firm of ARONOVITZ LAW routinely works with whistleblowers to document Medicare fraud and other forms of fraud against the government. Contact Miami Whistleblower Attorney / Qui Tam lawyer Tod Aronovitz to discuss your case.