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John Hopkins
John Hopkins
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Do you know who Rick Scott is? Really?

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It is election time again and this year very potential damaging choices need to be made.

So, I have to ask: Who is Rick Scott?

Just what the heck are Republicans Thinking? Republicans, even those who loved Bill McCollum, lovingly embrace Rick Scott for Florida’s Governor.

To my Republican friends: I still can not figure out just what you are thinking?

Who is Rick Scott:

  • The CEO of Columbia HCA hospital Corporation who, from every report, ran the company with carefull attention to detail.
  • The CEO of a corporation who engaged in Medicare fraud so severe that they racked up the largest fine in history at $1.7 billion. That is settlement, by the way. That means that arguably the actual fines should have surpassed $1.7 billion.
  • The CEO of a corporation who sold over $2 million in stock of the same corporation just days before the FBI raided the company for Medicare fraud. Let’s not be ingenuous – he saw it coming and engaged in insider trading.
  • The CEO of a hospital corporation who now has the temerity and the dishonesty to claim that he did not know his company was engaging in Medicare fraud so severe he set a record for fines.
  • The Palm Beach Post reports that Scott’s company settled on fines for false claims including:

Hospital operator Columbia/HCA’s settlements in 2000 and 2003 with the Justice Department required it to pay $1.7 billion in fines, including:

— $403 million for “upcoding,” where false diagnosis codes were assigned to patient records to increase reimbursement to the hospitals by Medicare, Medicaid, military health program TRICARE and the Federal Employees’ Health Benefits Program.

— $356 million for schemes to defraud Medicare, Medicaid and TRICARE through hospital cost reports, the year-end claims submitted by hospitals to the government to reconcile payments received during the year with amounts hospitals claim are actually owed.

— $225.5 million for unlawfully billing Medicare, Medicaid and TRICARE for claims generated by illegal payments to physicians for referring patients.

— $106 million for billing Medicare, Medicaid and TRICARE for home health visits for patients who did not qualify to receive them or for visits that were not performed, and for committing other billing violations. — $95 million for billing to Medicare, Medicaid, TRICARE and the Federal Employees’ Health Benefits Program for lab tests that were not medically necessary or were not ordered by physicians, plus other billing violations.

— $90 million for illegally charging Medicare for non-reimbursable costs in the purchase of home health agencies owned by Olsten Corp.

— $50 million for illegally claiming non-reimbursable marketing and advertising costs disguised as community education.

— $5 million because HCA’s Lawnwood Regional Medical Center in Fort Pierce submitted false claims in Medicare cost reports by inflating treatment for indigent patients and by shifting employee salary costs to boost its reimbursement.

  • The investor of a new company, Solantic, who has now been accused of the very same type of improper conduct as occurred at his prior company.
  • A man who is a lawyer and 75 times abused his 5th amendment right against self incrimination, not because he thought he was guilty of anything, but simply to stop what he perceived to be a fishing expedition.
  • In the alternative, a lawyer who believed he was so potentially exposed to self incrimination that he found it necessary to invoke his right against self incrimination and invoke the 5th amendment 75 times in one sworn statement.
  • A man who gets visibly uncontrolled when reporters ask him about deposition testimony he refuses to make public.
  • A man who says he is a “political outsider”, but continues to accept contributions from the Republican Party, Political Action Committees, lobbyists, and politically active corporate magnates.
  • A man who claims to have plans to solve “Florida’s problems”, but puts forth nothing of substance to demonstrate his plans.

Let’s approach selection of candidates this election season by reading and educating ourselves about the candidates. Whether Republican or Democratic Party, do not simply accept what the party says about a candidate, ask questions, get informed. Remember that everyone has some agenda or opinion or motivation for picking a particular candidate. Find your own, solid reasons for choosing.

2 Comments

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  1. P Glass says:
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    If Scott plans to run Florida like he ran HCA we are all in Big trouble!

  2. Gary Moran says:
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    All of this is old news – and it’s all true. This filled the papers in the 90′s. Those of us in healthcare followed it more closely, I guess, than the voters in Florida today. Thank you for bring it to the public’s attention. This man is a menace. I pray that Florida does not put him in charge of our State.