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Operating room. Photo: <a href="">Scott & White Healthcare</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Operating room. Photo: Scott & White Healthcare, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Prosecutors: Northern NY hospital to pay $750,000

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) Federal prosecutors say a hospital in northern New York has agreed to pay $750,000 to settle allegations that it submitted 1,900 improper Medicare claims.

According to the U.S. attorney's office, Carthage Area Hospital double billed the federal health care program for the elderly for operating room and ambulatory surgery services from 2006 through June 2010.

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Prosecutors say the settlement reflects the approximate amount of excess billing, that in light of the hospital's cooperation they did not seek treble damages plus penalties, which the law allows.

Hospital attorney John Valentino says Carthage was alerted to possible billing problems a few years ago, audited itself and took steps to correct them and ensure they wouldn't recur. He says authorities recognized there was no fraud involved and worked out a five-year repayment plan.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)


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