Attorney General Tong Announces $82,500 False Claims Settlement With Brookfield Dentist
(Hartford, CT) – Attorney General William Tong today announced an $82,500 civil False Claims Act settlement with Brookfield dentist Rawa Hassan regarding overcharges for dental restoration fillings the state alleges she did not provide.
An investigation conducted by the Office of the Attorney General, which was initiated after receiving a fraud referral from the Department of Social Services’ Office of Quality Assurance, developed substantial evidence that between July 2010 and May 2017, Hassan repeatedly overcharged the Connecticut Medical Assistance Program (CMAP) for dental work she did not perform. Specifically, Hassan submitted bills to the State Medicaid Program for multi-surface fillings that she either did not perform or the actual work performed was more limited and less expensive than that identified on the claim. In numerous cases, the amount of work performed during the length of the scheduled appointment was not credible. For example, in one instance, Hassan billed CMAP for 19 fillings, an oral exam and a teeth cleaning all in a single 75-minute appointment. In another instance, Hassan billed CMAP for 14 fillings, an oral exam and a teeth cleaning in a single 45-minute appointment. In total, the Attorney General’s investigation developed direct evidence that Hassan submitted 15 false claims to the CMAP on behalf of nine patients for a total of 72 restorations that were never rendered to the patients. The overcharges totaled approximately $6,500.
“Dr. Rawa Hassan engaged in a pattern of submitting false claims to the state’s Medical Assistance Program and received thousands of dollars for dental work she did not perform. The Office of the Attorney General takes seriously our obligation to safeguard our public healthcare programs, and we will take strong action against any provider who abuses the public trust,” said Attorney General Tong.
“Providers who engage in false claims continue to be subject of investigation and enforcement action. While they do not typify our enrolled dental and medical providers overall, this settlement again demonstrates the need for vigilance in safeguarding the integrity of taxpayer-funded health care,” said DSS Commissioner Deidre S. Gifford of the Department of Social Services (DSS), administering agency for Medicaid.
Anyone with knowledge of suspected fraud or abuse in the public healthcare system is asked to contact the Attorney General’s Antitrust and Government Program Fraud Department at 860-808-5040 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org; the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit at 860-258-5986 or by email at email@example.com; or the Department of Social Services fraud reporting hotline at 1-800-842-2155, online at www.ct.gov/dss/reportingfraud, or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Forensic Fraud Examiner Kevin Jeffko and Michael E. Cole, Chief of the Antitrust and Government Program Fraud Department, assisted the Attorney General with this matter.