Rick Scott Is Not A Criminal; He Is The New Governor Of Florida! Or The Rewards Of Medicare Fraud!

The Rick Scott Fraud Files

GOP Embraces Disgraced CEO As One Of Its Own!

When the corporation you start and operate is fined by the Federal Government for Medicare fraud, where do you run? Of course, you run for Governor of the state of Florida! And you win! After your company pays a whopping, record setting fine of $1.7 Billion dollars and the company pleads guilty to 14 felonies, the GOP says, "You are one of us!" and gives Rick Scott that hug that lets him know he has arrived! The new governor of Florida is now bringing his 'GOP values' to the sunshine state as its CEO. What a Glorious Old Party it is!

The great thing about incorporating is that major advantage: You can now hide behind the excuse that the corporation did it, I didn't. That is exactly what Rick Scott has done.

The Building Of An Empire! A Schmuck or A Criminal?

Rick Scott, best known for being the head of Columbia/HCA, built an empire of for profit hospitals across the country. It started with the purchase of two financially strapped facilities in Texas and grew to over 350 hospitals and free-standing outpatient for-profit clinics and surgery centers, with 30% of Florida hospitals owned by the corporation. They were called the Wal-Mart of Hospitals. It is a well known fact that HCA paid huge bonuses to doctors for their referral of patients to his facilities. The corporation paid about $30 million dollars in fines just for doctor kickbacks, which are illegal. On his campaign website, Scott said that he would have corrected any problems at the company ``immediately'' had he known about them. But a former company insider told The Miami Herald that he warned Scott in a meeting of ``significant problems'' at least six months before Scott's resignation, which came nine days after the FBI raided 33 Columbia hospitals and offices in six states. The new board took the rap for the crimes, while Scott skated away with millions in severance and more millions in stock options. If Scott knew nothing of the criminal acts committed by the corporation, arguments could be made that he was a schmuck. Either that or he was a criminal. There are no other choices. Neither option leaves him a credible governor.

The company was charged with, among other crimes, falsified billing designed to increase reimbursements from the government. It was just taxpayer money, something a governor would not normally be concerned with. They were found guilty of upcoding, which means billing for more expensive tests than were actually provided, false diagnosis codes, saying that a patient is sicker than he really is. An example of a false diagnosis would be admission to the hospital for the flu, but your paperwork and billing codes say you were admitted and treated for COPD. The result would be more money for the hospital stay. The kickbacks, and a myriad of other billing offenses brought HCA down. Scott has always said that he did not know what was going on in his own company, yet scores of employees, company attorneys and board members say otherwise. Whistleblowers brought numerous claims of fraudulent actions against the company. How many criminals ever stand up and say, "I did it, put the handcuffs on me."

According to Marc Caputo and Scott Hiaasen, Times/Herald Tallahassee Bureau, "During the investigations by the government, Scott was scheduled to be interviewed by investigators, and during a July 27, 2000 deposition in a civil lawsuit involving an unrelated contract dispute, Scott refused to answer questions by invoking his right to Fifth Amendment protection from self-incrimination 75 times — a maneuver that can be legally applied only when the witness suspects he is the target of criminal investigation". Scott knew the company was in a jam and he did everything he could to protect himself from any type of incrimination. It worked. This attorney (wouldn't you know it?) pleaded the 5th seventy five times. He didn't want to incriminate himself. If there was no knowledge, what was he protecting himself from?

Scott's favorite line during the campaign seemed to be, "As I have said repeatedly, Columbia/HCA made mistakes, and I take responsibility for what happened on my watch as CEO." Another GOP legislator that believes in redemption! Gotta love that redemption! The problem with Scott's statement is that he took no responsibility. Not once, not ever. Even though the corporation allegedly put aside $1 billion dollars into a special fund to pay fines, just in case the feds came snooping, Scott, as CEO, would have no reason to know about the existence of that fund. Right! Are you kidding me?

UPDATE: Scott Mandates Quarterly Drug Testing; Who Will Profit?

Always the businessman, Scott just issued an executive order that all public employees be drug-tested at least quarterly, and has presented legislation to mandate the testing of all welfare recipients in the state. The Constitutionality of these is in question, but the scope of this update is not designed to debate the wisdom or Constitutionality of this new and unexpected move. Instead, follow the money...

Rick Scott signed over his newest private venture, Solantic, to his wife. Solantic has several urgent care clinics throughout the state of Florida. They are currently being investigated by the Federal Government for alleged Medicare fraud. They not only provide urgent care services, but even offer "The Gift of Health". From Solantic's website:

"The new Health Check Card offers a comprehensive series of tests valued at $145 which may help identify and lead to early intervention for a variety of health issues. For only $50, the Health Check Card provides a basic physical exam and lab work including a complete blood count, metabolic profile and thyroid check, plus a free online Personal Health Assessment. It's a great value and can be used on its own or to supplement existing health care coverage for loved ones, friends and co-workers."

What a novel approach to gift-giving! Guys, check this out as a Valentine's gift or better yet, an anniversary gift!

More important than this though, Solantic offers, yes! wait for it, wait for it! Drug screening! For $35.00, Solantic performs a drug screening. Offering what they call a "Starbucks Style Menu", Solantic offers many lab tests and other services, but just how many of Florida's 486,265 (all employees who receive funding from the state) employees will receive drug testing at Solantic? The number of employees may seem high, but there are many employees whose jobs are funded by the state and are not included in the state's official tally. Assuming that Scott wants ALL employees that benefit from state funding to be tested (why wouldn't he?), the total would reach the 485 thousand mark. Let's see now: 485,265 X 4 tests per year = $67,937,100.00. That does not even count the welfare recipients in the state. And if Scott's wife is barred from providing the testing, Scott has many friends in the field. I may move and set up a few labs...That is alot of money for a state that is so cash-strapped that Scott is proposing the elimination of $21 million dollars in tax credits to seniors!

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chefsref profile image

chefsref 5 years ago from Citra Florida

It's truly amazing and depressing who we elect in this state and this country. It seems that if you label yourself conservative the masses will vote for you without regard for your character. Conservative politicians benefit from the "dumbing down" of America. I hope your hub causes some people to think before they vote.


Fay Paxton 5 years ago

The election of a man who settled the biggest medicare fraud case in history, in a state occupied by so many Seniors is just beyond the pale. The whole thing is just depressing.

Thanks for writing this hub, Jillian.

up/useful


Jillian Barclay profile image

Jillian Barclay 5 years ago from California, USA Author

Dear Chef,

For months, I have been at a loss as to why these people are being elected. Leave it to a chef to give me the answer that I have been unable to figure out! You are absolutely right! Your theory that it is the conservative label- that alone- Now I have my answer. People may not hear anything beyond that!

Why is it that this country is so afraid of liberals? We really are not evil people and some of us also love good food!

Thank you, Chef!


Jillian Barclay profile image

Jillian Barclay 5 years ago from California, USA Author

Dear Fay,

Thank you! Out of all the midterm elections, this was the one that really threw me for a loop! I thought, No Way! Seniors are usually pretty savvy when it comes to elections. They do seem to pay attention. I have not researched whether seniors actually voted for him, but it is amazing and shameful to suggest that he did not know. From past employees that I know personally, he was a hands on guy-had his nose in everything!

Thank you again, Fay! We just have to keep exposing fraud on both sides! Maybe we will reach people!


HSchneider 5 years ago from Parsippany, New Jersey

Great Hub exposing this criminal. This is another example of Corporate America buying its way into our government. This time with one of their own. Not only one of their own but the lowest of their own. Floridians are going to rue the day they did this. There are so many senior citizens and they hired this man who has bilked their healthcare system that is so vital to them. I don't understand it. California was smart enough to reject Meg Whitman after spending almost $150 billion dollars. She is not nearly as bad as Rick Scott. Not that Scott is a high bar to aim at.


Jillian Barclay profile image

Jillian Barclay 5 years ago from California, USA Author

Dear HSchneider,

I did my best to dissuade people from Meggie, as we call her. She would have destroyed California already.

The election of Rick Scott in Florida is just about more than I can take! Floridians are already disgusted with him! What a surprise!


randslam profile image

randslam 5 years ago from Kelowna, British Columbia

Keep ringing the bell, Jillian, the conservative voters may wake up and see that with Rick Scott, "It tolls for thee."

If the conservatives ever started preaching about how liberal Jesus was...lookout...Heads would turn, and some would roll.

Until America figures out that the conservative agenda of our modern era--beginning with Ronald Reagan hasn't been very conservative.

But as long as we have well-dressed mega-evangelists and well-dressed politicians playing the same role? Doomed.

People just can't seem to understand what has happened to the conservative agenda in the last few decades--and as a result, the economic mess we are seeing today.

Keep up the vocal fight and teach, teach, teach!


Jillian Barclay profile image

Jillian Barclay 5 years ago from California, USA Author

Thank you, Randslam!

From my Catholic school education, I seem to remember that Jesus was pretty liberal, what with all that talk of not being greedy, giving up your possessions and giving to the poor, etc.

Think he may have been a socialist!

From the Book of Mark: 23 And Jesus looked round about, and saith unto his disciples, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! 24 And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Jesus answereth again, and saith unto them, Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God! 25 It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

Uh-oh!


randslam profile image

randslam 5 years ago from Kelowna, British Columbia

Yep, now you're hitting another button of mine--"profit prophets." I can't stand the Peter Popoffs, Crystal Cathedral, mega churches like Joel Osteen's, who milk weak-willed people for what little money they have left to present themselves with the "wealth of Jesus."

Ugh--just disgusting.

Oh, Jesus was a socialist and communist. Of course, most of the founding fathers of America were socialists to--dedicating all of their personal treasures to the advancement of these new "United states." People just don't get it.

Especially, Republicans and Tea-Baggers, they haven't even read their own proclamation of independence--it was inter-dependent--which is what insurance, firemen, postal workers, teachers, hospitals, retirement homes, etc., are--social nets to help those who have fallen on hard times.

Just silly, really, isn't it? Wouldn't want to work as a team to create a better environment in our very social world.


Thomas Thyros 5 years ago

Hello Jillian:

Good article! Thanks for publishing it.

It is amazing to me that "we" constantly reward bad behavior. However, as we can see throughout our governmental system, the entertainment business, etc., those who perform the most applauding action, be it thievery, immorality, criminous, or generally act as troglodytes, tend to be promoted.

This “dumbing down” of America has brought us to our present state of reprehension. The GOP (Greed ’ol Parasites), enjoy their present station and they want a populace that is less than intelligent. A less intelligent mind can be perverted more easily.

The state has grown too big and powerful. Any state given too much power to do good, is also powerful enough to do bad. We are now seeing the results of this. The electing of Rick Scott is aberrant at best. A track record of theft, fraud, and avariciousness, thus gifted with a seat in government. He is not the first by far, and surely will not be the last.

Voted up and everything good.

Thanks,

Thomas Thyros

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