ADEA Washington Update

DOJ and HHS Team Up on Health Care Fraud

(HHS, Medicare and Medicaid Services, Opioid Abuse, Prescription Drug Abuse) Permanent link   All Posts

Earlier this year, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) launched an interagency taskforce that included federal and state law enforcement officials and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to tackle the opioid crisis. On June 28, the Attorney General and the Secretary of HHS announced that the taskforce had successfully taken action against 601 charged defendants across 58 federal districts, including 165 physicians and other licensed medical professionals, for their alleged participation in health care fraud schemes involving more than $2 billion in false billings. The charges stemmed from the fraudulent billing of Medicare, Medicaid, TRICARE and private insurance companies for medically unnecessary prescription drugs and compounded medications that often were never even purchased and/or given to beneficiaries. The charges also involved individuals contributing to the opioid epidemic, with a focus on medical professionals involved in the unlawful distribution of opioids and other prescription narcotics. Of those charged, 162 defendants, including 76 physicians, were charged for their roles in prescribing and distributing opioids and other narcotics.

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