The former CEO of Health Management Associates LLC will pay $3.46 million to settle to settle false billing and kickback allegations, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.
The for-profit chain commonly called HMA is no longer in business but used to own two Lancaster County hospitals, which were known at the time as Heart of Lancaster Regional Medical Center and Lancaster Regional Medical Center.
Gary D. Newsome was Florida-based HMA’s CEO from Sept. 2008 through July 2013.
His compensation for three of those years totaled almost $22 million, industry publication Becker’s Hospital Review reported based on based on financial filings.
Newsome’s attorney, Barry Sabin, provided a brief written statement saying he “continues to emphatically deny the government's claims” and “is pleased to now end the uncertainty and high expense of protracted litigation."
The agreement settles two allegations against Newsome.
One is that he caused HMA to knowingly submit false claims to government health care programs like Medicare for inpatient admissions when patients could have been treated on a less costly outpatient or observation basis.
The other is that he caused HMA to pay emergency department doctors to recommend inpatient admission when it wasn’t warranted.
HMA in September agreed to pay more than $260 million to settle similar allegations. About $55 million of that was related to the Lancaster County hospitals.
Additionally, a former local doctor’s group called Physician’s Alliance Ltd. didn’t admit wrongdoing and cited “complicated federal regulations — but agreed to pay more than $4 million to resolve kickback allegations.