A federal judge in Nashville has ordered Fresenius Medical Holdings, a renal-care provider, to pay the U.S. government $19.4 million to compensate for false claims submitted to Medicare by Renal Care Group, a company Fresenius acquired in 2005.
Fresenius ordered to pay $19.4 million
The U.S. attorney’s office in St. Louis, picking up allegations in a whistle-blower lawsuit, argued that Renal Care Group established a shell company in order to take advantage of Medicare’s 30% higher reimbursement to independent suppliers that provide patients with home dialysis equipment.
Congress clearly established the tiered payments in order to encourage home dialysis and reduce costs for patients and Medicare, U.S. District Court Judge William Haynes wrote in a memorandum explaining the ruling, and Renal Care Group “exhibited reckless disregard of those legal mandates.”
A Fresenius spokeswoman declined to comment. The company paid $3.5 billion in 2005 to acquire Nashville-based Renal Care Group, which at the time had about 425 dialysis clinics.
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