A Detroit-area home health care agency owner was sentenced today to 60 months in prison for causing the submission of over $1 million in false and fraudulent billing to Medicare as part of a $13.8 million health care fraud conspiracy.
The sentence was announced by Acting Assistant Attorney General Mythili Raman of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division; U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan Barbara L. McQuade; Special Agent in Charge Robert D. Foley III of the FBI’s Detroit Field Office; and Special Agent in Charge Lamont Pugh, III of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General’s (HHS-OIG) Chicago Regional Office.
According to plea documents, Rehan Khan was an owner of Moonlite Home Care Inc. As the co-owner of Moonlite, Khan paid and directed the payment of sums to doctors to refer patients for home health care services to Moonlite that were not medically necessary and/or never rendered. Khan also worked as a physical therapy assistant for several home health agencies in the Detroit area, known as Physicians Choice Home Health Care LLC and First Care Home Health Care LLC. Khan paid and directed the payment of kickbacks to beneficiaries for Physicians Choice, First Care and Moonlite. The Medicare beneficiaries sometimes pre-signed forms and visit sheets that were later falsified to indicate that they had received home health services that they had never received. Other times, the Medicare beneficiaries’ signatures were forged on forms and visit sheets to indicate that they received home health services that they had never received.
Khan paid and directed the payment of various medical professionals, including nurses, physical therapists, and physical therapy assistants, to create fictitious patient files to document home health services purportedly provided by Moonlite that were never rendered. Khan also signed fictitious patient files purporting to have given physical therapy services at all three home health care agencies that were in fact never rendered.
From about January 2011 through about September 2011, Khan submitted or caused the submission of fraudulent claims by Moonlite, for which Medicare paid approximately $891,473. From about January 2009 through about September 2011, Medicare paid approximately $866,512 to Physicians Choice and First Care for fraudulent physical therapy claims based on falsified files and notes signed by Khan. In total, Khan was responsible for approximately $1,757,985 in false and fraudulent claims to Medicare.
This case was investigated by the FBI and HHS-OIG and 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. The case was prosecuted by Assistant Chief Catherine K. Dick of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Philip A. Ross of the Eastern District of Michigan.
Since their inception in March 2007, strike force operations in nine locations have charged more than 1,480 defendants who collectively have falsely billed the Medicare program for more than $4.8 billion. In addition, the HHS 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.
To learn more about the Health Care Fraud Prevention and Enforcement Action Team (HEAT), go to: www.stopmedicarefraud.gov.