Corporate Compliance

Patient recruiter faces time, fines for Medicare fraud

Compliance Monitor, February 3, 2010

A retired nurse faces a maximum prison sentence of 10 years and a fine of $250,000 for her role in a patient recruiter scheme with a Houston-area DME company, reported the Department of Justice (DOJ).
Sylvia Smith, 64, along with Trucare Medical Equipment Services owner, Noel Jhagroo, billed Medicare for approximately $750,000 in false claims. According to the DOJ, the majority of claims were for enteral nutrition supplies and for bundles of orthotics referred to as “artho kits.”
Patients must have a feeding tube to use enteral nutrition supplies. Evidence in the trial revealed that no patient Smith listed on Medicare claims used a feeding tube. Jhagroo pleaded guilty to healthcare fraud in November 2009.

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