Feds, Cooper join forces for settlement

Keith Loria Jul. 1, 2010, 2:37pm


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Legal Newsline) - Tennessee Attorney General Robert Cooper has reached a $1.8 million settlement with a physical therapy business that allegedly incorrectly billed the Medicare and TennCare and Medicaid programs.

Benchmark Rehabilitation Partners LLC, doing business as Benchmark Physical Therapy, was charged by the state and federal government with violating the federal False Claims Act and the Tennessee Medicaid False Claims Act. The company allegedly submitted claims for physical therapy services that were not considered reimbursable under the regulations.

"The successful resolution of this case required a high degree of cooperation between agencies," Cooper said. "The coordinated pursuit of fraud is an essential component of a well-run healthcare system."

The business, the state claims, submitted claims for therapeutic exercise services from 2001-2006. Records showed that the patients during that time actually underwent aquatic therapy, which is restricted by reimbursement rules, Cooper claims.

The federal government alleged that the business filed improper claims for services not medically needed.

Under terms of the settlement, Benchmark will pay $190,977 to the state and $1,625,489 to the federal government. Benchmark denies any wrongdoing.

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