KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Woman Sentenced In Michigan Medicare Fraud Case; Medicaid Fraud Alleged In NY Dental Clinics

The Associated Press/Lansing State Journal: "Profits came quickly: Over one year, Daisy Martinez ripped off Medicare for $10.7 million at three clinics, and her daughter got $649,000 in just four months as they billed the government for sham drug treatments while luring desperate people off the street with cash, food and painkillers. Martinez, 51, was sentenced Thursday to eight years in federal prison by U.S. District Judge Gerald Rosen, who said he was 'just appalled' by the evidence. ... Court records describe a seemingly simple scheme in which Martinez migrated from the Miami area to cash in on the government's rich reimbursements for certain drug treatments given to Medicare beneficiaries. She moved to Michigan after authorities cracked down on similar scams in Florida" (White, 3/29).

The New York Post: "Dentists are using hawkers on the streets of Harlem to lure Medicaid cardholders to their clinics with promises of cash, The Post has learned. The practice is illegal and often a sign of fraud, according to the New York State Office of the Medicaid Inspector General, which oversees the state's cash-strapped public insurance fund. The hawkers unwittingly gave two Post reporters an inside peek at their operations. 'Dentist, dentist, dentist! Get paid $20 to $40! Medicaid!' barked Victor Sotille on the corner of 123rd Street and Lexington Avenue on Friday. ... Sotille told a Post reporter that if he has a Medicaid card, he'll receive $20 cash if he sits for a dental cleaning and $40 for partial denture work" (Montero, Fasick and Bennett, 3/29). This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.