Insurance Fraud NEWS
Connecticut counselor allegedly bills for self, family members
June 21, 2018, Norwich, CT
A 47-year-old Norwich counselor has been arrested and charged with first-degree larceny by defrauding a public community and other violations in connection with a nearly $200,000 Medicaid fraud case, announced the Connecticut Office of the Chief State's Attorney.
Susan J. Britt, of Nemczuk Drive, is accused of billing the government-run Medicaid health care program with fraudulent claims, more than half of which were for herself and family members, according to prosecutors.
Britt was arrested by Inspectors from the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit in the Office of the Chief State's Attorney and charged with two counts each of first-degree larceny by defrauding a public community and Health Insurance Fraud, and one count each of first-degree criminal attempt to commit larceny by defrauding a public community and first-degree identity theft.
According to the arrest warrant affidavit, staffers at the state Department of Social Services, which administers the Medicaid program. began investigating Britt in 2012 after she began submitting bills for an entity called An Inner Peace. Britt operates the business out of her home; it provides counseling to patients with mental, behavioral and emotional disorders.
"Subsequent investigation revealed Britt was the highest paid professional counselor in Connecticut by far when compared to peers, the warrant states, and that despite her substantial Medicaid earnings she and three family members were themselves enrolled in Medicaid, which provides health care coverage to low income individuals," wrote State's Attorney officials in a statement.
Over a five-year period beginning in June 2013, Britt billed Medicaid for services that were either never rendered or billed at a higher reimbursement rate than allowed, according to prosecutors. In all, she submitted fraudulent claims involving 17 patients totaling $91,042.68, and another $103,733.84 in fraudulent claims for herself and family members, the warrant states.
Britt was released on $225,000 bond and is scheduled to appear in Hartford Superior Court, Part A, on August 16.
Additionally, the Office of Attorney General George Jepsen and Department of Social Services Commissioner Roderick L. Bremby also are seeking to recover damages from Britt under the state's False Claims Act through a separate civil action announced today against Britt. See the full text of their release below.
The charges, all of which are felonies, could land Britt in prison for dozens of years if convicted and if she receives maximum sentences.
The case will be prosecuted by the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit.
"The Unit is grateful for the assistance it received in this investigation from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General, the state Department of Social Services Office of Quality Assurance, state Attorney General's Office and the Rocky Hill Police Department," wrote officials, who added that the charges are merely accusations and Britt is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.
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The release from Attorney General George Jepsen and state Department of Social Services Commissioner Roderick L. Bremby:
The state has initiated a lawsuit alleging violations of the Connecticut False Claims Act and breach of contract by a licensed professional counselor from Norwich who is accused of billing the state's Medicaid program for services not provided, Attorney General George Jepsen and state Department of Social Services Commissioner Roderick L. Bremby said today. The lawsuit also alleges that the provider sought to conceal the scheme by failing to maintain required records or destroying records.
Susan Britt is a licensed professional counselor who resides and practices in Norwich, running her counseling practice – known as An Inner Peace – out of her home. Britt is enrolled as a behavioral health provider in the Connecticut Medical Assistance Program (CMAP), which includes the state's Medicaid program.
The state alleges that from at least January 2013 through September 2016, Britt engaged in a scheme to falsely bill the CMAP for services that she never provided to her Medicaid patients. The state alleges that Britt would provide act
Source: Norwich Patch