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Kaiser to pay $3.75 million in billing case

Bob Egelko

Friday, December 4, 2009

Kaiser health care companies in California have agreed to pay $3.75 million to settle claims that they falsely billed the government for teaching physicians' services.

Federal authorities said that from 1996 to 2002, Kaiser charged the Medicare and Medi-Cal programs for treatments in which teaching physicians purportedly supervised the work of medical residents or students. The patients' records failed to show that the instructors were present, authorities said.

U.S. Attorney Joseph Russoniello's office said Kaiser had disclosed the misconduct to federal health officials. Kaiser denied liability, however, and said it was settling to avoid the uncertainty of a court case.

The settlement, announced Thursday, apportions $3.4 million to the federal government and $350,000 to the state.

This article appeared on page C - 2 of the San Francisco Chronicle