Nursing Home Chain Settles Medicare Fraud, Whistleblower Claims for $38M

Extendicare Health Services Inc., a nursing and rehabilitation facilitation chain, has agreed to pay $38 million to settle Medicaid and Medicare fraud claims that were originally brought in a whistleblower lawsuit. The chain is accused of billing for substandard care and submitting claim for therapy services that were medically unnecessary. Extendicare is one of the largest nursing home chains in the United States.

The primary whistleblower in this Medicaid fraud case is Tracy Lovvorn, a physical therapist who was retained as a rehabilitation director by an Extendicare subsidiary. Lovvorn is entitled to $1.8 million of the government’s settlement. Another relator, Donald Gallic, also filed a qui tam case against the nursing and rehab chain. He is entitled to a nearly $260,000 award.

The allegations against Extendicare include the failure to adequately staff its 146 facilities in 11 states, inadequate catheter care, failure to follow protocols for pressure ulcers and falls, and improper administration of medications. According to officials, the nursing and rehab care was so unsatisfactory at certain Extendicare facilities that staff failed to prevent head injuries, fall accidents, and bedsores. Certain patients developed infections or became dehydrated or malnourished. Some individuals needed hospital care because of the negligent nursing care provided to them. These residents and their families could be entitled to nursing home neglect compensation.

In Massachusetts, please contact our Boston whistleblower lawyers or Medicare fraud attorneys if you suspect that a fraud has been committed against the federal or state government. Altman & Altman LLP can help you explore your legal options for filing a whistleblower claim or another type of civil lawsuit.

Becoming a whistleblower is a huge responsibility and there could be consequences because of your decision to step forward and report the wrongdoing. Our Massachusetts whistleblower lawyers are here to protect our clients’s rights and make sure they get the award they are entitled to for filing a Qui Tam case.

Chain to Pay $38 Million Over Claims of Poor Care, NY Times, October 10, 2014

Extendicare Health Services Inc. Agrees to Pay $38 Million to Settle False Claims Act Allegations Relating to the Provision of Substandard Nursing Care and Medically Unnecessary Rehabilitation Therapy, US Department of Justice, October 10, 2014

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