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With Medicare fraud estimated to cost taxpayers between $50 and $60 billion annually, the federal government is moving aggressively to identify and prosecute physicians, nurses, billers, patient recruiters and business owners who are suspected of defrauding the government.  

Federal officials said arrests in a five-city sweep that was announced on Friday will continue over the weekend as agents move to shut down operations that were charging the government more than $225 million in fraudulent claims.

Reducing Medicare fraud is included in projections to fund the healthcare reform bill.  

In addition to criminal fraud cases, justice department officials and CMS investigators are stepping up investigations of hospitals, particularly hospital-physician financial agreements that might violate fraud and abuse provisions. These include physician recruiting contracts and  hospital payments to doctors for certain types of medical director arrangements.

For details on the raids and arrests announced on Friday, click here to read the HealthLeaders.Com report.

Feds Charge 94 Suspects in Five-city Medicare Fraud Sweep.
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