Cumberland County Man Pleads Guilty To Health Care Fraud, Money Laundering, And Theft Of Public Money
HARRISBURG - The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that Florentina Mayko, age 39, of Cambria County, Pennsylvania, pleaded guilty on June 14, 2023, before U.S. Magistrate Judge Martin C. Carlson to conspiracy to commit health care fraud for defrauding Medicare and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services between 2017 and 2019. Mayko had been charged in a one-count Information on May 9, 2023.
According to United States Attorney Gerard M. Karam, Mayko agreed with others to defraud Medicare by submitting medically unnecessary urine drug tests for chronic opioid patients at medical clinics where she was the chief executive officer, including a group of clinics known as Pain Medicine of York or “PMY” (also known as All Better Wellness).
Mayko became the CEO of Pain Medicine of York around January 2018. Prior to that, Mayko served as Director of Operations of a group of medical practices known in the Information as “Practice Group 1.” Mayko was hired to work at Practice Group 1 by an individual known in the Information as Physician 1.
The owner of PMY, known as “PMY Owner” in the Information, was friends and business partners with Physician 1. Physician 1 was imprisoned for health care fraud and federal tax offenses in mid-2017, at which point the operation of Practice Group 1 was transitioned to PMY. When Mayko was promoted to the position of CEO of PMY, her responsibilities did not materially change. From the time of her promotion onward, Mayko was in charge of the day-to-day management of PMY’s operations, which included the practices previously associated with Practice Group 1.
PMY had a practice, established in 2016 by Physician 1 and PMY Owner, of ordering multiple urine drug tests for each patient at every PMY office visit, despite a lack of medical necessity. From mid-2017 onward, Mayko and PMY Owner were repeatedly confronted with information regarding the unlawful nature of the company’s UDT billing practices but continued to utilize the practice until search warrants were executed at PMY’s various locations in November 2019. PMY ceased operations soon thereafter because it could no longer retain medical providers.
PMY billed Medicare for more than $10 million in urine drug tests from mid-2017 through the end of 2019, and Medicare paid out over $4 million for these urine drug tests. The urine drug tests ordered by PMY were sent to an in-house laboratory at PMY whenever possible. As a result, when medically unnecessary tests were billed to Medicare, the proceeds from them went to PMY itself. A large portion of these proceeds went to PMY Owner and Mayko. Mayko, in turn, purchased several investment properties using these funds.
Mayko agreed to pay $1,408,976.48 in restitution to the United States. She also agreed to forfeit to the United States several properties located in Ocean City, Maryland and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
The case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Drug Enforcement Administration, and the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General. Assistant U.S. Attorney Ravi Romel Sharma and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Smultkis are prosecuting the case.
The maximum penalty under federal law for conspiracy to commit health care fraud is 10 years of imprisonment, a term of supervised release following imprisonment, and a fine. A sentence following a finding of guilt is imposed by the Judge after consideration of the applicable federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.
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