Tenet, Health Management Accused of Paying Kickbacks
By Edvard Pettersson - Jul 31, 2013 10:32 PM ET
Tenet Healthcare Corp. (THC), the third-biggest publicly traded U.S. hospital chain, and Health Management Associates Inc. (HMA) were accused in a lawsuit of paying kickbacks to a Georgia clinic in exchange for referrals.
The two hospital chains were sued under the Federal False Claims Act in a whistle-blower lawsuit brought by Ralph Williams, a former Chief Financial Officer of Health Management Associates, on behalf of the U.S. and Georgia. The lawsuit, filed in federal court in Athens, Georgia, was ordered unsealed today.
The clinic recruited pregnant, undocumented Hispanic women, who would be eligible for Medicaid benefits when they gave birth, and referred them to Health Management Associates and Tenet hospitals in exchange for kickbacks, according to the complaint.
Rick Black, a spokesman for Dallas-based Tenet, and Shamera Rye, a spokeswoman for Naples, Florida-based Health Management Associates, didn’t immediately respond to phone messages after regular business hours seeking comment on the lawsuit.
The case is U.S. v. Health Management Associates Inc., 09-00130, U.S. District Court, Middle District of Georgia (Athens.)
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