An 11-count indictment unsealed on Friday charges former Kindred Home Health employee Amber Price, 37, and Christopher Cruz, 46, owner of a medical marketing business, CP Cruz Management Group, LLC (Cruz), with one count of conspiracy to violate the federal anti-kickback law.
Under the alleged scheme, Price and Cruz would create fraudulent prescriptions using actual hospital patient data. They would either forge the physicians’ signatures on the prescription forms or use pre-signed or photocopied forms. Price and Cruz would then provide fraudulent prescriptions to pharmacies or labs for submission to Medicare and private payors for reimbursement. When the pharmacies and labs got reimbursed, they would pay a percentage of the reimbursement to Price and Cruz.
The submission of false prescriptions is a violation of the civil False Claims Act. No doubt, Price and Cruz were charged with conspiracy to violate the Anti-Kickback Statute in order to impose criminal liabilities on top of the civil penalties under the FCA.