Banner Health has agreed to pay the United States over $18 million to settle allegations that 12 of its hospitals in Arizona and Colorado knowingly submitted false claims to Medicare by admitting patients who could have been treated on a less costly outpatient basis, the Justice Department announced today.  Headquartered in Arizona, Banner Health owns and operates 28 acute-care hospitals in multiple states.

The Justice Department announced today that Rotech Healthcare Inc., a Florida-based respiratory equipment supplier, has agreed to pay $9.68 million for knowingly submitting false claims for portable oxygen contents to Medicare.  As part of the settlement, Rotech admitted that it knowingly billed portable oxygen contents to Medicare for beneficiaries who did not use or require them.  The Company further admitted to billing Medicare regardless of whether such contents were delivered.

Two Tennessee health care executives were charged in an indictment unsealed today for their alleged participation in a $4.6 million Medicare kickback scheme involving durable medical equipment (DME).

The owner of an Orlando, Florida-area pharmacy, who was also a licensed pharmacist, was sentenced today for his role in a kickback scheme involving pain and scar creams that resulted in the payment of approximately $4.3 million in false and fraudulent claims to TRICARE.  TRICARE provides coverage for active duty military members and their families, as well as retired veterans.

The assistant director of nursing of a Michigan home health agency was sentenced to 36 months in prison today for his role in a scheme involving approximately $1.6 million in fraudulent Medicare claims for home health services that were procured through the payment of kickbacks, and that were medically unnecessary and not provided.

Texas-based SightLine Health LLC (SightLine), which operates radiation therapy centers throughout the United States, has agreed to settle a False Claims Act lawsuit alleging that it knowingly submitted claims to the Medicare program that violated the Anti‑Kickback Statute, the Justice Department announced today.  Together with Integrated Oncology Network Holdings LLC (ION), which acquired SightLine in 2011, SightLine has agreed to pay the government up to $11.5 million.