There is nothing wrong with wanting to get people the medical care they need. There is nothing illegal about assisting someone in finding health care providers or treatment facilities that will best serve their needs. There is something wrong, however, with accepting payment from health care providers or facilities for referring patients. In Michigan and across the country, patient brokering is an illegal act. If one is convicted of patient brokering, the consequences can be significant.
What exactly is patient brokering? In short, this is when a health care provider or treatment facility pays people to bring them patients or when someone refers patients for a fee. Patient referrals are common practice in the medical world, but doing it for money is prohibited thanks to various laws, including the Eliminating Kickbacks and Recovery Act.
Patients suffering from various forms of addiction are most often the victims of patient brokering. This is because they are prone to relapse, which means they require frequent referrals to treatment centers. As victims tend to cross state lines for care, this is not just a state matter. It is a federal matter.
Accusations of patient brokering are not anything to treat lightly. If convicted on this kind of charge, the consequences may include significant fines and incarceration — among others. This is a serious offense that deserves a serious defense. Michigan residents who find themselves facing health care fraud charges for patient brokering can help themselves by turning to an experienced criminal defense attorney who will walk them through their criminal proceedings and help them fight for the best outcomes possible.