House Passes Fraud Bill To Keep Executives Associated With Wrongdoing From Future Medicare BusinessThe Hill's Healthwatch Blog: The House Wednesday passed a bill that would ban executives from "doing business with Medicare if their companies were convicted of fraud, even if the conviction takes place after their departure. The bill was introduced by the Ways and Means health panel's chairman and ranking member, Reps. Pete Stark (D-Calif.) and Wally Herger (R-Calif.)." The CBO said a few individuals would be affected by the law and that it would not have a "significant budgetary impact" (Pecquet, 9/22).
Health News Florida: "The 'Strengthening Medicare Anti-Fraud Measures Act' would give federal health officials more power to bar companies or executives from future participation in the program. Being exiled from Medicare is called the 'kiss of death' by those in the industry. The bill would address a case like that of [Rick] Scott, Republican candidate for Florida governor, who was able to remain in the health care industry after subsidiaries of the company he led in the 1990s pleaded guilty of massive Medicare fraud."
"However, it apparently would not apply to a majority of current corporate cases, such as the one against WellCare Health Plans, since a guilty plea or verdict is required to trigger it. In the WellCare case, the government deferred prosecution in return for payment of fines" (Gentry, 9/23).