Spokane mental overall health counselor to fork out over $138K for fraudulent services

Ray Smith billed Washington Point out Medicaid to cover the products and services of his employed therapists, who were unlicensed and unqualified.

SPOKANE, Wash. — Ray Smith, a Spokane mental wellbeing counselor, has agreed to pay back $138,984 to solve allegations that he and his business fraudulently billed Washington State Medicaid, according to a push launch from the Spokane US Attorney’s Office

The US Attorney’s Workplace says Smith’s business,  A Brief Counseling Middle (ABCC), utilized numerous mental well being therapy suppliers, billing Washington State Medicaid to protect their products and services. Those people suppliers have been then uncovered to be unlicensed and unqualified.

“Mental wellbeing companies are a important element of a harmless and strong local community, and our general public funding for people companies is a precious and minimal source,” United States Attorney Vanessa R. Waldref stated. “Fraudulently billing the general public for unqualified and unlicensed treatment expert services provided to some of the most susceptible members of our community is basically unconscionable, and will not be tolerated.”

Washington Condition Medicaid is funded by federal and point out taxpayers and supplies well being insurance for lower-revenue Washington citizens. In this situation, it can give reimbursement for treatment method services furnished by certified and licensed suppliers who are a element of the point out Overall health Care Authority. 

According to courtroom documents, Smith improperly billed Medicaid for therapists operating at ABCC who ended up unlicensed and unqualified. They did not meet up with the necessities for acquiring Medicaid, ended up not contracted by the point out and consequently have been not suitable for reimbursement as a result of the application, the US Attorney states.  

The scenario commenced again in November 2019 after two whistleblowers who made use of to provide billing solutions for ABCC filed a qui tam criticism under seal. This type of grievance requires an investigation by the United States to choose regardless of whether intervention is important. 

It was decided intervention was important this thirty day period and the settlement was received, in accordance to the US Lawyer.

The $138,984 settlement resolves the allegations beneath the Wrong Claims Act, according to the press launch. It also resolves the allegations of fraudulent billing and misrepresentation of solutions offered by certified and competent therapists.

“To pose as competent psychological well being pros in purchase to assert Medicaid bucks is unethical, perilous, and illegal,” Washington Attorney Basic Bob Ferguson stated. “I am proud of our collaboration with our federal partners, and the difficult get the job done it took to carry this business to justice.”

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