February 12, 2014 — Texas is one of the states hit hardest in recent years by dental Medicaid fraud. With the help of conscientious insider employees, however, Texas and other states are fighting back to end the fraud that costs taxpayers millions of dollars and often puts young patients at risk. Under state and federal False Claims Act statutes, tipsters are empowered to file a whistleblower claim on behalf of the federal and state governments. The qui tam provisions of the federal Act reward informants with a significant portion of the government’s recovery.
Dentist Falsified Patient Records to Qualify for Bonuses
A pediatric dentist in Texas has been sentenced to eighteen months in prison for dental Medicaid fraud. Dr. Tuan Truong, aka “Terry Truong,” who practiced at the Kool Smiles dental clinic in Abilene, was also ordered to pay almost $58,000 in restitution to Kool Smiles.
According to reports by the Texas Insider, when Truong started with Kool Smiles in 2008, the pediatric dental clinic paid him a base salary with bonuses when Truong performed additional procedures on patients over and above the daily targets established by Kool Smiles management. From June 2008 to July 2009, Truong falsified dental records by claiming to provide services for Medicaid patients that he had not in fact performed. Based on the phony patient records, Kool Smiles filed false claims with Medicaid for work that had never been done. Truong’s fraudulent entries led Medicaid and its affiliates to reimburse Kool Smiles with somewhere between $120,000 and $200,000 for dental services that never happened.
Truong allegedly profited personally from the scam by receiving Kool Smiles bonuses in excess of $32,000 to which he was not entitled.
Blowing the Whistle on Medicaid Fraud by Unscrupulous Dentists
When dental clinics are involved in false Medicaid claims, it is not uncommon to find that dentist-employees are compensated based on quotas set by corporate office managers. The qui tam lawyers with Waters & Kraus have been at the forefront of whistleblower litigation involving dental Medicaid fraud. We’ve earned a national reputation for our results in qui tam cases. Contact us by email or phone our whistleblower lawyers at 855.784.0268 to learn more about our False Claims Act practice.