Medicare Fraud 101

Friday, February 26th, 2010 @ 2:03 pm | Politics

It’s always good any time Republicans like Mike Pence start harping about Medicare fraud to keep in mind that one of their biggest supporters, Rick Scott, was CEO of a company that paid the highest fines in history for billions of dollars worth of Medicare fraud.

The effort has alarmed many Democrats and liberal health-care advocates, who are pushing back with attacks highlighting Scott’s ouster as head of the Columbia/HCA health-care company amid a fraud investigation in the 1990s. The firm eventually pleaded guilty to charges that it overbilled state and federal health plans, paying a record $1.7 billion in fines…

Scott, 56, seems unfazed by such criticism, emphasizing that he was never charged with any wrongdoing and that other health-care companies were also fined for overbilling problems. A lawyer with no formal medical training, Scott built Columbia/HCA into the largest U.S. health-care company before he was ousted by the board of directors in 1997. He was also once a partner in the Texas Rangers with George W. Bush. Scott now runs an investment firm and owns, among other things, a chain of walk-in urgent-care clinics in Florida called Solantic.

-mg

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