The former owner and operator of National Care EMS, a Houston-area ambulance company, recently agreed to settle accusations that his company paid kickbacks to hospitals and nursing facilities in exchange for the rights to their Medicaid and Medicare transport referrals. The company was accused of providing heavily discounted or free ambulance transportation to several nursing homes in exchange for the referral of other Medicaid and Medicare business. Paying, offering, soliciting, or receiving payment to induce referrals of services that are covered by federal health care programs is strictly prohibited under the Anti-Kickback Statute.
Attorney Tony Dewitt of Bartimus Frickleton and Robertson, P.C. represented Dan Block, the EMS executive who acted as a whistleblower on the company’s fraud, and who received a portion of the recovery. The settlement resulted from a cooperative effort among the Texas Attorney General’s office and the US Attorney’s office.