ATLANTA (September 22, 2014) – Prominent Georgia psychiatrist Randy Warner recently filed a lawsuit against Tanner Medical Center, Inc. under the Georgia False Medicaid Claims Act (GAFMCA). The “whistleblower” lawsuit, filed in June by the Pete Firm, P.C. but unsealed earlier this month, is brought by Dr. Warner on behalf of the State of Georgia and details 534 instances of false billing of Medicaid by Tanner for professional services performed by Dr. Warner.
The lawsuit claims that Tanner billed Medicaid and received payments for services rendered by Dr. Warner at its Willowbrooke facility even though Dr. Warner was not a Tanner employee. The medical facility had no authority to bill Medicaid but its actions consequently caused Dr. Warner’s legitimate billings to Medicaid to be denied.
According to the lawsuit, Dr. Warner refused to sign a contract allowing Tanner to bill for the services he provided to patients. The suit states that Dr. Warner felt that the contract allowed Tanner to bill for his services for a full week while only paying him for one to three dates of service per week at below market rates.
“The contract was a bad deal for me and a bad deal for patients, so I refused to sign it,” said Dr. Warner. “Tanner did not have the right to bill Medicaid for my services but did it anyway.”
Violators of the GAFMCA can be liable for a civil penalty of between $5,500 and $11,000 for each violation, plus three times the amount of all payments found to be fraudulently received from Medicaid. The lawsuit details hundreds of instances, from 2009 to 2012, involving 178 indigent patients that Tanner billed Medicaid for services rendered by Dr. Warner. Civil penalties and damages are estimated to exceed $5 million.
“Georgia Medicaid dollars must be used appropriately to provide care to indigent patients, but in this case they were not,” said Dr. Warner. “Georgia deserves to be paid penalties and damages, and our taxpayers should get their money back.”
A copy of the GAFMCA lawsuit is available for download at www.lawsuitpressrelease.com.
Contact: John P. David