Health Care Fraud: Alive And Well In NJ [AUDIO]
Ever wonder why your health insurance premiums keep going up and up?
U.S. Attorney for New Jersey Paul Fishman believes a big part of the problem is health care fraud.
During a news conference in Newark, he announced the president and two employees of a Morris County-based medical lab - Biodiagnostic Laboratory Services LLC - have been arrested and charged with conspiracy, for allegedly bribing dozens of doctors to direct their patients to get unnecessary blood tests.
As a result, BLS collected tens of millions of dollars in illegal profits.
"By paying illegal kickbacks to doctors, BLS put money between doctors and their oath to provide unbiased guidance to their patients," said Fishman. "Not only did they break their patients trust, but they broke many federal laws."
He stressed that it doesn't matter whether you're covered by Medicaid or Medicare, or by one of the many insurance companies that are victimized by fraud each year. Losses on this scale affect all of us - and fraud isn't just a drain on the Medicaid or Medicare programs. It drives up the price that all Americans must pay for health care and it compromises the safety and health of patients.
"There is no room in our health care system," he said, "for those who see a person in need of care as an opportunity to make more money on the side."
FBI Special Agent for New Jersey Aaron Ford said health care fraud is a severe problem in the Garden State, and he stressed the people committing this kind of crime should be forewarned.
"My office, along with our health care task force, will find you, will stop you and bring you to justice."
The U.S. Attorney also said investigators believe dozens of doctors may have been taking kickbacks.
"If you were one of those doctors who was participating in this scheme, it would be a really good idea for you to call us before we call you."