FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
TUESDAY, JUNE 11, 2002
TDD (202) 514-1888
FLORIDA COMPANY & PARENT FIRM AGREE TO PAY U.S. OVER $830,000
TO SETTLE ALLEGATIONS OF OVERCHARGING MEDICARE
WASHINGTON, D.C.— Florida Medical Quality Assurance, Inc. (FMQAI) and its parent company, Alabama Quality Assurance Foundation (AQAF) have agreed to pay $838,832 to resolve allegations that FMQAI submitted false claims for reimbursement to Medicare, the Justice Department announced today.
The two firms are peer review organizations that perform services under a direct contract with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the agency that administers the Medicare program. The settlement with the two companies resulted from a government investigation following a self-disclosure that revealed the improper charging of time and expenses actually spent on FMQAI's Medicaid contract with a state agency in Florida. A qui tam or whistleblower complaint was also filed in the case. The overcharges took place from approximately October 1997 to September 1998. Janice Hensley, the person who filed the qui tam complaint, will receive a portion of the settlement proceeds.
"This settlement demonstrates the United States' commitment to protecting federal funds from fraud and abuse, " said Robert D. McCallum, Jr., Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Civil Division.