A Dublin-based hospice company that has settled a case with the federal government alleging that it filed false Medicare claims denies the accusations.
In a statement emailed to The Telegraph late Thursday night, Serenity Hospice Care founder and co-owner John Welch said the facility chose to accept the settlement because the amount was much less than Serenity would have incurred in legal fees during a trial.
“To clarify any misunderstandings, Serenity did not settle with the Federal Government for filing false claims,” he said.
On Tuesday, the Department of Justice issued a news release announcing the settlement. Serenity and an affiliate corporation agreed to pay the government $581,504 to settle allegations that the hospice company submitted or caused the submission of false Medicare claims for patients ineligible for hospice care under Medicare regulations.
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The company disputes that.
“All of the local South Georgia physicians who were primary care doctors for Serenity’s hospice patients provided affidavits and then gave sworn testimony reaffirming that their patients were appropriate for hospice care,” Serenity attorney Jason Bing said in a statement.
A former employee had helped bring the lawsuit against the company in 2013.
Serenity has offices in Dublin, Vidalia, Warner Robins, Milledgeville, Columbus and Peachtree City.