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Parkland Telemedicine Company Owner Pleads Guilty To Medicare Fraud Scheme




Telemedicine refers to video or phone appointments between patients and their doctors. Becoming a necessity during the pandemic, the practice is one that continues to provide a great convenience to those seeking medical assistance.

 

“With telemedicine, you don’t have to drive to the doctor’s office or clinic, park, walk or sit in a waiting room when you’re sick,” explains Dr. Brian William Hasselfeld on behalf of Johns Hopkins Medicine, “You can see your doctor from the comfort of your own bed or sofa. Virtual visits can be easier to fit into your busy schedule. With telemedicine, depending on your schedule, you may not even have to take leave time from work or arrange for child care.”

 

Telemedicine company owners charged in $110 million telemedicine fraud scheme.

 

As reported last week by the District of Massachusetts branch of the U.S. Attorney’s Office, 40 year-old Steven Richardson has been charged for his involvement in a telemedicine fraud scheme. According to the report, the Parkland, Florida resident is the owner of Expansion Media (Expansion) and Hybrid Management Group (Hybrid). Richardson has agreed to plead guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud.

 

The report details that Richardson’s scheme involved medically unnecessary durable medical equipment (DME). They included orthotics such as back and knee braces. Charging documents contend that, between March 2016 and January 2023, Expansion and Hybrid entered into business relationships with telemarketing companies that generated leads by targeting Medicare beneficiaries.

 

“The telemarketers then allegedly paid Expansion and Hybrid on a per-order basis to generate orders for DME for these beneficiaries,” the report reveals, “To arrange for these orders to be signed, Richardson allegedly worked with medical staffing companies – including one in Massachusetts – to find doctors and nurses who were willing to review and sign prepopulated orders, typically without any contact with the beneficiaries.”

 

The beneficiaries received no examinations.


Richardson is accused of falsely portraying the medical providers as having performed legitimate examinations on Medicare beneficiaries. He allegedly provided the signed orders to the telemarketing companies which then sold those orders to DME suppliers. Richardson is believed to have known the DME suppliers would use the signed orders to submit claims to Medicare. He knew, however, that the DME was medically unnecessary. The documentation was both false and tainted by kickbacks.

 

“The charge of conspiracy to commit health care fraud provides for a sentence of up to 10 years in prison, supervised release for up to three years and a fine of up to $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss, whichever is greater,” the report concludes, “The details contained in the charging documents are allegations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.”

 

Are you an attorney who is currently working a healthcare fraud case?

 

The clinical experts at Allegiant Experts can help you! We coordinate and support courageous whistleblowers that shine lights on fraud, waste and abuse. Contact us today to schedule a complimentary consultation. Please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 407-217-5831. You may also email us at info@allegiantexperts.com.

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