Tennessee physicians settle allegations of overbilling

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Primary care physicians in Memphis, Tenn., agreed to resolve allegations that they charged Medicare for services provided by nurse practitioners at the higher physician rate, according to the Justice Department

The settlement, announced Oct. 30, involves Shoaib Qureshi, MD, and Imran Mirza, MD. Dr. Qureshi owns and operates Memphis Primary Care Specialists and Lunceford Family Health Center. Dr. Mirza owns and operates Getwell Family Medicine. All of the practices are in Memphis.

The Justice Department alleged that from 2015-18, Drs. Qureshi and Mirza and their clinics overbilled Medicare for services provided by nurse practitioners who weren't supervised by physicians. While Medicare will pay the higher physician rate for some services provided by a nurse practitioner if they are directly supervised by a physician, this was not the case at the Memphis practices, where physicians were sometimes out of state or abroad when the services occurred, according to the Justice Department. 

The physicians agreed to pay $341,690 to resolve the allegations. The allegations were first raised in a whistleblower lawsuit.

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