Physician Indicted in $20 Million Home Health Scam

A Miami physician was indicted as part of a $20 million Medicare fraud conspiracy that already has found one home health operator sentenced to prison.

Henry Lora, 51, was charged with two counts of fraud on allegations that the part owner and operator of a Miami-area clinic wrote prescriptions for home health care and other services for Medicare beneficiaries that were not medically necessary in exchange for kickbacks and bribes.

Lora’s partner of the now-defunct clinic Merfi Corporation, Isabel Medina, already pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit health care fraud and was sentenced to nine years in prison in March 2014. Medina admitted her part with her co-conspirators to defraud Medicare in losses exceeding $20 million.

Prosecutors allege that Merfi employed physicians, physician assistans and other medical professionals and falsified patient records to make it appear patients were qualified for the services billed to Medicare.

Three others from Miami pled guilty in January 2014 for taking part in the scam: Lerida Labrada, 59; Mayra Flores, 49; and German Martinez.

The indictment is part of a national sweep to collect Medicare losses. The Medicare Fraud Strike Force has charged over 2,300 defendants representing more than $7 billion in Medicare billing since its inception in 2007.

Written by Amy Baxter