The Arc of Anchorage, an organization supporting Alaskans with intellectual and developmental disabilities, has agreed to pay nearly $2.3 million to settle a False Claims Act complaint alleging it defrauded Alaska’s Medicaid Program.
In an April 24 announcement, the Alaska Department of Law said the State of Alaska accused Arc of Anchorage of billing Medicaid for services that it never provided and billing for overlapping services with the same provider.
Additionally, the state further alleged that Arc of Anchorage failed to repay funds owed to the Medicaid program that the organization had identified in fiscal audits.
The allegations constitute violations of the federal False Claims Act, a law designed to combat fraud targeting taxpayer-funded programs and agencies.
The settlement requires the Arc to repay Medicaid overpayments for billings between 2012 and 2016 totaling $1,149,696. It also requires a penalty of 100 percent of the overpayments, thereby doubling the amount the Arc owes to Medicaid for a total of $2,299,392.
Another part of the agreement requires the organization to enter a five-year corporate integrity agreement with the Office of Inspector General. The agreement subjects the Arc of Anchorage to greater regulatory scrutiny and requires it to implement a number of measures to prevent fraud, waste, and abuse in the future.
Alaska Attorney General Jahna Lindemuth said the goal of the False Claims Act suit and resulting settlement aimed to “make the Alaska Medicaid Program whole” while making sure the Arc stayed in business. She also said the resolution should “send a strong message of deterrence to other providers.”
The False Claims Act lawsuit and settlement were coordinated by the Alaska Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU), the Office of Inspector General (OIG), and the Alaska Medicaid Program.