Kindred Pays Largest Corporate Integrity Fine in History
Kindred Healthcare Inc. has been ordered to pay a $3.07 million fine after it was found that the company violated a corporate integrity agreement with the federal government. The fine is the largest of its kind in history.
Kindred, the largest provider of post-acute care in the country, agreed to a corporate integrity agreement after the company was found to have provided unnecessary therapy sessions to nursing-home patients in order to overbill the federal Medicare program. The act violated the False Claims Act, which punishes companies that attempt to defraud the federal government.
The fine came after Kindred continued the practice of overbilling in the fourth year of a five year corporate integrity agreement with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (OIG). The OIG visited Kindred offices several times through unannounced visits and discovered that no attempt had been made to correct the practices by the fourth year.
The OIG found through audits that from 2013- 2015, Kindred had not implemented any of the required changes and that its inadequate billing practices led to Medicare overpaying reimbursements.
The company had billed Medicare for hospice services provided to patients who were not eligible or did not meet the requirements for the highest and most expensive level of care.
Kindred has stated that it inherited the corporate integrity agreement when it acquired Gentiva Hospice in Feb. 2015. Kindred claims that since then, it has taken significant actions to correct the mistakes it has been accused of. That includes stronger regulations and upgrading internal audits and investigations.
After the conclusion of the federal audit conducted by the OIG, Kindred also stated that it will be closing 18 facilities that have been “underperforming” since 2015.
If you or a loved one were residents of a healthcare hospice and discovered that you were overcharged for unnecessary services, the nursing home abuse lawyers at PKSD may be able to help. We are experienced in fighting for the rights of those who have been taken advantage of by long-term care facilities. Find out in a free, no obligation consultation if you are entitled to compensation.