Manager of Hospice & Home Health Companies Sentenced to Prison for Role in $150 Million Health Care Fraud Scheme

HARLINGEN, Texas (April 22, 2021)—A Texas man was sentenced to 27 months in prison for his role in a conspiracy at the Merida Group, a chain of hospice and home health agencies throughout Texas, to falsely convince thousands of patients with long-term incurable diseases they had less than six months to live in order to enroll the patients in hospice programs for which they were otherwise unqualified, thereby increasing revenue to the company.

According to court documents, Jose Garza, 44, of Harlingen, was the operations manager for the Merida Group and responsible for carrying out the business’s day to day operations, including overseeing the recruitment of patients at certain locations throughout the Rio Grande Valley. Garza, and others working at his direction, recruited patients at hospitals and other medical practices by touting that the Merida Group offered “hospice that you don’t have to die to use,” pursuant to the Merida Group’s corporate marketing strategy.

Source: Manager of Hospice & Home Health Companies Sentenced to Prison for Role in $150 Million Health Care Fraud Scheme / HomeCare Magazine

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