The Acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Wisconsin, Gregory Haanstad, announced today that the United States has reached a civil settlement agreement with Atlas Healthcare, Inc., and its owners, Deana Bajanen and Sheena Jones, for $435,000 pursuant to the federal False Claims Act. Atlas is located in Hales Corners, Wisconsin. Atlas is alleged to have knowingly submitted false claims for personal care worker services to the Wisconsin Medicaid Program for patients that did not need the services or did not need the level of services for which Atlas billed the Medicaid program.
The civil settlement resolves a lawsuit filed under the qui tam – or whistleblower – provisions of the False Claims Act, which allows private citizens with knowledge of fraud on the government to bring a civil action on behalf of the United States. The Wisconsin Medicaid Program pays for medically necessary personal care services, which are services intended to assist a recipient with activities of daily living necessary to maintain a recipient in his or her place of residence in the community. The qui tam complaint alleged that Atlas submitted false claims to the Wisconsin Medicaid Program for personal care worker services for patients who did not need the care. As part of the resolution, the whistleblower will receive a share of the settlement.
The investigation of Atlas, Jones, and Bajanen was undertaken by the Office of the Inspector General for the United States Department of Health and Human Services, the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit for the Wisconsin Department of Justice, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Wisconsin.
The civil case was captioned U.S. and State of Wisconsin ex rel. Ritacca v. Atlas Healthcare Inc., et al., Case No. 10-C-253.
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