Excerpt from the press release for Medicare Fraud Strike Force Charges 91 Individuals for Approximately $430 Million in False Billing
“court documents allege that patient recruiters, Medicare beneficiaries and other co-conspirators were paid cash kickbacks in return for supplying beneficiary information to providers,“
This is not the first time that an OIG news release has noted that Medicare beneficiaries are selling their Medicare numbers in return for gifts or money. What is missing from all these press releases is any disclosure that the beneficiaries have been charged with a crime.
If the OIG is serious about stopping Medicare fraud then why not charge all the criminals? Would this not send a message to the Medicare community that patients have some responsibility to not engage in fraud? Why are the AARP and 60 Plus Associations not telling their membership that accepting gifts and money for the use of their Medicare number is a crime AND will be punished by the law? Why isn’t HHS, CMS and the MACs doing the same?
It is time to send Grandma and Grandpa to jail if they engage in Medicare fraud.