Bilirakis and Castor Introduce Bill to Strengthen Medicare Fraud Penalties
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Reps. Gus Bilirakis (FL-12) and Kathy Castor (FL-14) announced today that they introduced the bipartisan Medicare Civil and Criminal Penalties Update Act, H.R. 3245. This legislation cracks down on Medicare fraud and abuse by increasing civil and criminal fines.
“The Medicare program is absolutely critical for seniors in the Tampa Bay area and across the country. Not only is fraud and abuse in Medicare an affront to hardworking taxpayers, it hurts the millions of seniors who rely on the program. I’m proud to be working with my fellow Tampa Bay representative, Congresswoman Castor, to ensure Medicare is strong for today’s and tomorrow’s beneficiaries,” said Rep. Bilirakis.
“It is essential to crack down on Medicare fraud for our older neighbors and all taxpayers. I have championed bipartisan measures to expand fraud investigations and strengthen responses for victims – especially when ID tax fraud swept the state and nation – but more needs to be done as fraudsters find new ways to steal from our seniors and all taxpayers. Stricter penalties to weed out fraud and criminal activity in Medicare will protect seniors and future beneficiaries by helping to shore up the Medicare Trust Fund. I thank my Tampa Bay colleague, Congressman Bilirakis, for joining me to protect seniors and taxpayers in our state and across the country,” said Rep. Castor.
Last week, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General announced the largest health care fraud takedown in history. 412 defendants were charged nationwide, including more than 80 cases in Florida, for alleged participation in Medicare fraud totaling approximately $1.3 billion in fraud losses.
The Energy and Commerce Committee, which Bilirakis and Castor serve on, will be examining the Medicare Civil and Criminal Penalties Update Act during a hearing later this week. Click here to learn more.