Last week, we told you that Florida leads the nation in mortgage fraud. Today, we have some good news and some bad news regarding the state’s standing with Medicare fraud. We’ll start with the bad and end on the good, it being the holiday season and all. “South Florida has been known as the epicenter of Medicare fraud for years,” said U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Miami. Thankfully, Ros-Lehtinen has reintroduced legislation that would double the fines and jail time for people convicted of Medicare fraud.
“It is time we took the fight to those who seek to defraud Medicare and prey on our most vulnerable citizens,” she said. The new bill would also create a new criminal offense punishable with a 10-year minimum sentence for those who knowingly sell or distribute the ID numbers of Medicare beneficiaries. In addition, the legislation also prevents those who have been involved in Medicare fraud in the past from billing Medicare if they switch providers. The bill would also facilitate real-time information sharing among law enforcement agencies to aid in uncovering and dismantling Medicare scams. “This bill not only increases the penalties for those who engage in Medicare fraud, but also sets up a pro-active paradigm that will help stem the tide of abuse in South Florida and across the nation,” asserts Ros-Lehtinen.
Miami-Dade County, widely regarded as the nation’s healthcare fraud capital, will be the target for the new Medicare fraud legislation. According to law enforcement and healthcare officials, Medicare fraud in South Florida costs taxpayers between $4 billion and $4 billion annually. Nationwide, Medicare and other healthcare fraud is estimated to cost about $68 billion each year.
If you are seeking fraud investigation services, contact Contego Services Group today. With the leadership of seasoned fraud investigator Linda Webb, Contego has a solid track record for catching criminals involved in medical fraud, insurance fraud, medicare fraud and all other types of fraud crime. For more information, call 1-855-WE-SWARM today.