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Freeman Health agrees to pay $9.3 million - KOAM TV 7

Freeman Health agrees to pay $9.3 million after self-reporting federal law violations

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Freeman Health Systems agrees to pay millions of dollars to the government after self-reporting federal law violations.

The hospital will pay $9.3 million in a settlement for violating the False Claims Act and Stark Law.

According to legal documents Freeman gave incentive pay to 70 physicians based on contracts.

Those physicians referred services that have a financial stake with Freeman.

Because of incentive and being billed to Medicare it is against the law.

Freeman President and CEO Paula Baker says the internal and external audits in 2009 found the issue.

She says cost of care were not impacted and no services were billed that were not provided.

"Immediately after discovering the error in 2009, we immediately restructured all the agreements and they have been in full compliance since that time," Baker says.

Baker says patients will not see any difference in billing costs as the hospital has money set aside to correct the issue.

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