Preferred Family Healthcare (PFH) has agreed to settle in federal and state cases for $6.5 million.
The company had been investigated by the Arkansas Attorney General’s Office for false claims submitted to the Arkansas Medicaid Program. The Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) of the Attorney General’s Office headed up the investigation.
An informant had filed a complaint with the state Attorney General’s Office in 2016, alleging that PFH had billed Medicaid for counseling services that were not performed or were over-billed and subsequently revealed that PFH may have inappropriately billed Qualified Medicare Beneficiaries.
The MFCU confirmed the claims that service claims were improperly submitted to Medicaid but it was unclear who was submitting the claims. The unit later served a “Request for Information” to determine how these claims were submitted.
“The false claims addressed in these settlements were the result of a culture of corruption at the highest levels of PFH in Arkansas, and as Attorney General, I will do everything in my power to hold any Medicaid provider accountable when Medicaid Program rules or the law is violated,” Attorney General Leslie Rutledge said in a statement. “This settlement shows we will aggressively pursue any company that deceives Arkansans or takes advantage of the Medicaid program which provides medically-necessary treatment for many Arkansans.”
In the settlement, PFH agreed to pay $4,555,632.10 in federal false claims case and $1,944,367.90 in a separate state settlement. Five former PFH employees have also been charged with Medicaid fraud in state court, with an additional employee settling false claims.
PFH no longer operates in Arkansas.