From CBS 11 Investigators
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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - A group of doctors who make up Texas Vascular Associates, PA face a lawsuit that alleges massive medical fraud.
Cortez Mills was an employee for the surgical group, but was fired after working two years in the billing department. “My last couple of weeks there, I was cursed out by a couple of the physicians.”
Mills says she was fired, because she refused to falsify medical bills.”It was pretty much, I don’t really care what Medicare says. I pay your salary. You do what I tell you to do,” recalled Mills as she described her conversations with several of the doctors.
The 41-year-old filed a lawsuit claiming that the doctors at Texas Vascular Associates instructed her to commit illegal acts such as double billing.
Mills says in one case, she billed a patient’s insurance company and the company paid the bill. Mills says the patient then switched to a new insurance provider and claims the doctors told her to bill the patient again. “They [the doctors] approached me to re-enter those charges and change the date to two days later, because the new insurance was going to be effective and then re-bill so they could get paid again,” explained Mills.
The lawsuit also accuses the doctors of upcoding, which is charging for a more expensive procedure over what is actually performed.
Mills also accuses the physicians of illegally charging patients on top of what Medicaid had already covered. “I would call Medicaid. They would say, no, you can’t bill the patient,”said Mills. “I would let the doctors know that and there were a couple who were consistent, stating, I don’t care. I want my money. Turn them over to collections.”
Texas Vascular Associates are based at Baylor’s Heart and Vascular Hospital. However, the suit does not accuse Baylor of any wrongdoing.
The president of Texas Vascular Associates issued CBS 11 the following statement: “Ms. Mills is a disgruntled former employee who was terminated for cause. In fact, because she was terminated for just cause, Ms. Mills was denied unemployment benefits in a decision upheld in June 2012 by the Texas Workforce Commission. Her allegations are outrageous and completely false and we look forward to proving that in court.”
Mills says she never falsified any medical bills, despite being allegedly pressured to do so.
Her attorney, Matthew Scott, says Mills took a polygraph test and passed. Click below for the polygraph results.
The plaintiffs also supplied CBS 11 with an affidavit by another former employee who worked in Texas Vascular Associates billing department. The affidavit supports Mills’ accusations in her lawsuit.
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