Ivan Scott, of Florida, was sentenced this week to 10 years in prison for his involvement in a conspiracy to submit fraudulent claims to Medicare for genetic testing.
Scott was the owner of Scott Global, an Orlando telemarketing call center. Through his company, Scott targeted Medicare beneficiaries with telemarketing calls that induced beneficiaries to take expensive genetic cancer screening tests by falsely claiming such tests were covered by Medicare. Each genetic test costs approximately $6,000.
After beneficiaries agreed to take the text, Scott paid bribes and kickbacks to telemedicine companies to obtain doctors’ orders authorizing the tests. The telemedicine doctors approved the tests even though they were not treating the beneficiaries for cancer or symptoms of cancer. In some cases, the doctors never even spoke to the beneficiary.
Scott then sold the genetic tests and doctors’ orders to labs in exchange for illegal kickbacks. Scott concealed these illegal kickbacks with invoices that appeared as if Scott was being paid for hourly marketing services, rather than receiving fees based on referral volume.
In less than 6 months, labs submitted more than $3.3 million in claims to Medicare for the genetic tests that Scott had referred. Medicare reimbursed the labs over $1.3 million. Scott personally received nearly $200,000 for his role in the conspiracy.
On January 8, 2021, Scott was convicted by a federal jury on one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud, three counts of health care fraud, one count of conspiracy to pay and receive unlawful health care kickbacks, and three counts of receiving unlawful kickbacks. On April 14, 2021, Scott received a 10-year prison sentence for his involvement in the conspiracy.
The government was keenly focused on the misuse of telemedicine to carry out the criminal acts: “The defendant used telemarketing and telemedicine to defraud Medicare of more than a million dollars for unnecessary genetic screening tests[.] The department will continue working with our law enforcement partners to bring to justice those who seek to use new technologies to plunder our government health care programs.”
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