US charges 91 in wave of health fraud cases

US authorities have charged 91 people over some $295 million in alleged fraud schemes related to Medicare, the government-run health program for seniors, the Justice Department said.

The accused include doctors, nurses and other medical professionals, and the charges relate to several fraud cases in a number of cities, the department said in a statement issued Wednesday.

It said the charges, unsealed over the last two weeks, were made possible by a task force involving federal, state and local investigators and designed to combat Medicare fraud by using data analysis and "community policing."

"Our anti-health care fraud efforts have never been more innovative, collaborative, aggressive -- or effective," Attorney General Eric Holder said.

The Justice Department said the so-called Strike Force had, since March 2007, charged more than 1,140 defendants who collectively had false billed the for $2.9 billion.

(c) 2011 AFP

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