Man­ager of Florida nurs­ing home where eight died has been charged be­fore

Modern Healthcare - - REGIONAL NEWS -

The man­ager of a Florida nurs­ing home where eight peo­ple died fol­low­ing Hur­ri­cane Irma has a his­tory of health­care fraud ac­cu­sa­tions.

Court records show the U.S. at­tor­ney’s of­fice in Mi­ami filed civil charges in 2004 against Dr. Jack Michel and Larkin Health Sys­tems, among others. That com­pany owns the Re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion Cen­ter at Hol­ly­wood Hills, where eight pa­tients were pro­nounced dead Sept. 13 af­ter the fa­cil­ity lost air con­di­tion­ing.

In 1997, be­fore Michel owned Larkin, fed­eral pros­e­cu­tors say he was part of a kick­back scheme that in­volved pay­ing doc­tors for re­fer­rals and ad­mis­sions to Larkin Com­mu­nity Hos­pi­tal, Mi­ami. Pros­e­cu­tors say that af­ter he bought the hos­pi­tal in 1998, Michel and others fraud­u­lently in­creased the num­ber of pa­tients at the fa­cil­ity, along with their Medi­care and Med­i­caid rev­enue, by bring­ing in pa­tients from nurs­ing homes and as­sisted-liv­ing fa­cil­i­ties. The case was set­tled in 2006 for $15.4 mil­lion.

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