Three Texas physicians and one hospital executive have agreed to pay $880,199 to resolve allegations they were involved with a kickback scheme.
The settlement resolves allegations that the physicians, Linh Nguyen, MD, and Thuy Nguyen, MD, both of Dallas, and Cleburne-based Heriberto Salinas, MD, received kickbacks in return for lab test referrals, according to a Dec. 4 news release from the Justice Department.
Drs. Linh Nguyen and Thuy Nguyen will pay $404,813 to resolve two allegations from October 2015 to February 2018. The first alleges they received thousands of dollars in payments from purported management service organization Ascend MSO of TX in return for ordering lab tests from Rockdale, Texas-based critical access hospital Little River Healthcare and Framingham, Mass.-based clinical laboratory Boston Heart Diagnostics. The second allegation says the pair received thousands in payments from an MSO named Geminorium in return for ordering lab tests from Frisco, Texas-based True Health Diagnostics.
Dr. Salinas agreed to pay $150,386 to resolve two allegations from December 2015 to May 2017. The first alleges he received thousands of dollars from Ascend for ordering lab tests from Little River. The second alleges he received thousands of dollars from a purported MSO Herculis for ordering tests from Boston Heart.
Additionally, Lexington, Texas-based Peggy Borgfeld, former controller, CFO and COO of Little River, will pay $325,000 to resolve allegations that she caused false claims to Medicare, Medicaid and Tricare for knowing about the kickbacks to the physicians, among other allegations.