Physician assistant excluded from Medicare program for accepting kickbacks

A 73-year-old physician assistant from Alama, Mich., will be excluded from the Medicare and Medicaid programs for at least five years for accepting $12,600 in illegal kickbacks, according to the Department of Justice.

In addition to mandatory exclusion from the federal healthcare programs, Ronald Mingle, PA, was ordered to pay $62,900 in restitution to Medicare and Medicaid and a $15,000 fine. He'll also serve six months of home detention.

Mr. Mingle is the eleventh person to be convicted on felony charges in connection with a joint federal-state investigation into a kickback scheme initiated by Babubhai Rathod. Between January 2007 and January 2012, Mr. Rathod allegedly paid physicians, physician assistants and others for referring patients to his medical clinics, physical therapy clinics and a home healthcare agency. In 2013, Mr. Rathod was sentenced to four years in prison. He also agreed to a 20-year exclusion from federal healthcare programs, according to the DOJ.  

The allegations against Mr. Rathod originated in a civil complaint filed under the whistle-blower provision of the False Claims Act by a person who worked in one of his offices.

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