The U.S. Justice Department is charging 412 people for taking part in health care frauds and opioid-related crimes that cost taxpayers about $1.3 billion in false billings, it announced Thursday, July 13.
The arrests include 115 doctors, nurses, and other licensed medical professionals and other people charged for their roles in prescribing and distributing opioid painkillers. The department describes it as the largest health care fraud takedown in U.S. history.
Six of the defendants are Michigan doctors accused of operating a scheme to bill the Medicare health care program for $164 million in fraudulent claims by prescribing patients with medically unnecessary opioids.
Another case in Florida involved a fake rehab clinic that recruited addicts with gift cards, visits to strip clubs, and even drugs. The scheme led to $58 million in false treatments and tests, said prosecutors.