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Deseret News
August 31, 2011

Government going after health care fraud hard
By Lois M. Collins

Prosecution for health care fraud nationally this year has already outpaced all of 2010. And an analysis shows that revved-up efforts by the Justice Department should reach an 85 percent increase over last year's cases. That's the word from the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, housed in Syracuse University, which has reported 903 prosecutions so far this fiscal year. The numbers were bolstered, it says, by a series of Federal Bureau of Investigations cases. In Puerto Rico, for instance, 420 defendants were charged this year. And in the 50 states, cases in the Southern District of Florida accounted for one-ninth of all prosecutions for health care fraud. The full report says the current pace would mean 1,355 prosecutions this year, an increase of 85.4 percent over last year, when 731 cases were prosecuted. The numbers were tracked using data obtained from the Executive Office for United States Attorneys, obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, the TRAC report said. It says the current caseload is a 157 percent increase from five years ago. "Justice - FBI" accounted for 75.7 percent of prosecutions. The rest were primarily from investigations by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. As for the charges, most were listed as health care fraud, followed by "mail fraud attempt and conspiracy". No. 3 was "mail fraud - fraud and swindles." Other categories each had fewer than 100 cases prosecuted. Of the top 10, bank fraud was "the one showing the greatest projected increase in prosecution up 2,000 percent compared to one year ago." That statute also had the largest projected increase compared to five years ago, TRAC said.

Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, Syracuse University
Copyright 2011
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