In the latest fraud bust involving partial-hospitalization programs in South Florida, a physician and seven co-conspirators were convicted of billing Medicare for more than $50 million in services for recruited patients who didn't need or couldn't benefit from the services they purported to receive.
Dr. Gary Kushner, the medical director of Biscayne Milieu Health Center in Miami, was remanded to the custody of law enforcement authorities after his conviction for healthcare fraud and conspiracy to commit fraud, according to a Justice Department news release. Prosecutors said the psychiatrist created and certified fake documents that made it appear that ineligible patients had received legitimate partial-hospitalization treatments.
Prosecutors said officials with Biscayne paid recruiters to find people who would stand in as legitimate recipients of partial hospitalization, a form of intense treatment for severe mental illness. But evidence showed that many of the clinic's purported patients could not benefit from the services because they were chronic drug abusers, suffered from dementia or Alzheimer's or had no mental-health diagnosis.