Clinic Manager Faces|Decades in Prison

HOUSTON (CN) – A former health clinic manager faces up to 50 years in prison for filing $3.8 million in phony claims for speech and swallowing therapy, federal prosecutors said.
     Tiffany Nicole Thompson, 31, pleaded guilty Friday to conspiracy to commit health care fraud and four counts of health care fraud, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.
     Thompson admitted in court that she made the phony claims while managing Rabon Communication Enhancement, a children’s speech therapy provider in the Houston suburb Sugar Land.
     “Thompson admitted she conspired to submit $3,784,642 in false and fraudulent claims to Tricare and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas for speech therapy and swallowing therapy treatments that were not provided,” prosecutors said in the statement.
     “Thompson admitted she knowingly billed Tricare for services when children did not appear for appointments. Thompson further admitted she billed Blue Cross and Blue Shield for approximately $545,440 worth of services for herself and another person, neither of whom were patients at RCE or received any health care services at RCE.”
     Thompson also admitted filing more than $379,000 in claims with Blue Cross “for three fellow employees who worked at the clinic and never received any treatment there,” prosecutors said.
     Tricare and Blue Cross paid out $1.25 million on Thompson’s claims.
     Thompson faces up to 50 years in federal prison, 10 years on each count, and a $250,000 fine.
     U.S. District Judge Melinda Harmon let Thompson out on bail until her Oct. 24 sentencing hearing.

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