Former Medical Equipment Firm Operator Guilty of Health Care Fraud

TexasBusiness.com


Texas Business reports: DALLAS—Philip Odoemena, 59, the former owner/operator of Kingsway Medical Systems Inc., appeared this morning in federal court in Dallas and pleaded guilty before U.S. Magistrate Judge Irma C. Ramirez to one count of health care fraud, announced U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaña of the Northern District of Texas.

Odoemena, who has been in custody since his arrest in early May 2012, faces a maximum statutory sentence of 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and restitution.

Sentencing is set for January 4, 2013.

According to documents filed in the case, from February 2005 to May 2012, Odoemena owned and operated Kingsway, a durable medical equipment (DME) company that was first located in Desoto, Texas, and then in Richardson, Texas.

He was approved by both Medicare and Texas Medicaid to provide durable medical equipment, including wheelchairs and accessories, adult incontinence supplies and enteral nutrition supplies (tube feeding) to Medicare beneficiaries and Medicaid clients.

Odoemena admitted that from May 2007 through March 2012, he ran a scheme to defraud Medicare and Medicaid by submitting fraudulent claims that falsely represented that legitimate and qualifying supplies were provided and that falsely represented the medical necessity of the supplies.

In one instance, for example, he billed Medicaid $870 for tube feeding supplies for a Medicaid client, when, in fact, he merely provided that client an oral nutritional supplement. Medicaid paid Kingsway $826 for that claim — funds that Odoemena used for his own personal benefit.

The case is being investigated by the FBI, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services - Office of Inspector General, and the Texas Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit. To learn more health care fraud, please visit: http://stopmedicarefraud.gov.

The case is being prosecuted by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian W. Portugal and Assistant U.S. Attorney Katherine E. Pfeifle.