Detroit-Area Medical Clinic Owners Convicted in $23 Million Medicare Fraud Scheme

The owner and the vice president of a Detroit-area physical therapy clinic were convicted on June 22, 2010, by a federal jury for their roles in a $23 million Medicare fraud scheme, announced the Departments of Justice and Health and Human Services.
Evidence at trial established that Wayne County Therapeutic Inc. (WCT) in Livonia, Michigan, purported to be an outpatient clinic that specialized in physical and occupational therapy.  Evidence at trial established that Bernice Brown, the owner of WCT, purchased fake physical and occupational therapy files from certain third-party contractors, and she and the Vice President of WCT billed the services reflected in the files to Medicare as if WCT therapists had provided the services. Brown instructed her staff to create false documents and to add those documents to medical files to make it appear that the WCT therapists, who were licensed in the state and enrolled with Medicare, had performed the services, when she knew they had not.
The case was brought as part of the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, supervised by the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Michigan.  Since their inception in March 2007, Strike Force operations in seven districts have obtained indictments of more than 585 individuals who collectively have falsely billed the Medicare program for approximately $1.3 billion. In addition, HHS’s Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, working in conjunction with the HHS-OIG, are taking steps to increase accountability and decrease the presence of fraudulent providers.
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