Laurel-based physicians group, neurologist to pay $800K settlement

Laurel-based physicians group, neurologist to pay $800K settlement
U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst announced Jefferson Medical Associates and Dr. Aremmia Tanious will pay the United States $817,635.06 after allegations of violating the False Claims Act.

JACKSON, MS (WDAM) - A now dissolved medical practice in Laurel and a neurologist have agreed to pay more than $800,000 to resolve claims under the False Claims Act due to allegations of Medicare overpayments.

U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst announced Jefferson Medical Associates and Dr. Aremmia Tanious will pay the United States $817,635.06 after allegations of violating the False Claims Act by failing to return overpayments they received from Medicare claims from Jan. 1, 2012, through Dec. 31, 2014.

Jefferson Medical Associates and Tanious were also alleged to bill Medicare using multiple medical codes when documentation did not support the billing practices, according to Hurst.

“This settlement should serve as a reminder to medical providers receiving Medicare funds that they must timely report and return any overpayments owed to Medicare or be subject to liability under the False Claims Act. I applaud our healthcare fraud investigators and prosecutors, as well as agents with the Office of Inspector General for Health and Human Services, for their diligent work in recovering the public’s money,” Hurst said in a news release.

Both Jefferson Medical Associates and Tanious assisted investigators during the investigation by providing voluntary disclosures after discovering through audits of patient files and claims data that Medicare had been overbilled in some instances.

Hurst said in the news release that the settlement is from allegations only and no determination of civil liability has been made.

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