8 Florida patients arrested in Medicare scam

MIAMI - Eight Florida seniors have been indicted for their alleged roles in a $12.5 million Medicare home health scam.

Federal officials say the defendants received kickbacks for pretending to be patients. The defendants range between 67 years old and 79 years old.

Home health care has been a vulnerable spot for Medicare fraud in recent years, but it's unusual for authorities to arrest the patients. As such fraud has become more rampant, authorities are turning their attention to complicit patients.

Health and Human Services inspector general agent Brian Martens recently testified before a Senate Special Committee on Aging, noting beneficiaries can make around $1,500 a month in cash.

He said Medicare fraud can't succeed without patients, but he warned complicit beneficiaries are involved in many Florida cases.

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