(COLUMBUS, Ohio)—Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine praised his office's Health Care Fraud Section for a record-setting recovery of $103,768,000 for the state fiscal year that ended in June.
"The Health Care Fraud Section has had a record-setting year of getting back stolen taxpayers' funds that should have gone to help those who are sick or injured," said Attorney General DeWine. "Ohioans can rest assured that we will remain focused on making sure that valuable Medicaid funds and workers compensation dollars are used as intended."
The Health Care Fraud Section of the Ohio Attorney General's Office consists of the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) and the Workers' Compensation Fraud Unit (WCFU).
For the fiscal year ending last month, the MFCU recovered $101,896,865. It secured 135 indictments and 121 convictions.
Ohio's MFCU also earned the 2011 State Medicaid Fraud Control Award from the Office of Inspector General, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, recognizing it as tops in the nation.
In one case, the MFCU uncovered a scheme in which an independent home health provider paid kickbacks to five other people. They aided the provider in defrauding Medicaid by billing for services that were never provided. He pled guilty, was sentenced to two years in prison and ordered to make more than $233,000 in restitution.
For the same time period, the WCFU recovered $1,870,425, with 99 indictments and 100 convictions.
Among the cases pursued by the WCFU, one involved a person who was receiving total disability payments from the state Bureau of Workers Compensation – while working full-time as a home-remodeler. He pled guilty, was sentenced to five years probation and ordered to pay investigative costs of $19,500 and restitution of $24,100.
Since taking office this year, Attorney General DeWine has increased the assets available to the Health Care Fraud Section. Additional agents have been hired to further enhance the capabilities of this section.
"It's our duty to protect citizens from fraud and see that those in need get the care they are entitled to," said Attorney General DeWine. "We will continue to work hard, in cooperation with other state and federal agencies, to fulfill this important responsibility."
Ohioans who have information regarding possible health care fraud should contact the Ohio Attorney General's Office at 1-800-282-0515 or report fraud online at www.OhioAttorneyGeneral.gov.
Lisa Hackley: 614-466-3840
Eve Mueller: 614-466-3840