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Mississippi 256 articles

The Fraud List: Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) 

The Fraud List

When the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) needed technical and consulting services in considering a rule involving the handling and reprocessing of low-grade radioactive waste, it turned to Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) – a Reston, Va.-based firm that provides scientific and engineering services to government agencies and commercial enterprises. Given the implications of the rule for the health of the general public, the NRC required whatever contractor it chose to be free of conflicts of interest that could lead to biased decisions. NRC regulators were considering a rule that would have permitted the release or recycling of certain materials ... Read More

Whistleblower complaint leads to $15.69 million recovery for Medicare


Sixteen U.S. hospitals and their parent companies have agreed to pay the U.S. $15.69 million collectively to resolve allegations brought by a whistleblower under the False Claims Act that they fraudulently billed Medicare for services that were not medically reasonable or necessary. The case concerns claims for reimbursement the hospitals made to Medicare for Intensive Outpatient Psychotherapy services. Medicare pays for an appropriate course of the psychotherapy services when a number of specific requirements are met, the most notable being that the services provided are needed for the diagnosis and treatment of the patient’s condition. The whistleblower lawsuit alleged that from ... Read More

Blue Bell won’t resume making ice cream for several months

Recall - blue bell ice cream cups

Blue Bell Creameries said on its website that its ice cream won’t be back in stores for several months as the company cleans it three manufacturing facilities in the wake of a deadly listeria outbreak and develops a plan for its ice cream products to return to production. “Unfortunately, we do not yet have a firm timeline for when Blue Bell Ice Cream will be back in stores, but we believe at this time that it will be several months at a minimum,” said Blue Bell CEO and President Paul Kruse. “We are evaluating all of our operations in light ... Read More

Speed limits too fast for truck tire endurance

Truck Speed Limits

On many U.S. interstate highways west of the Mississippi River, speed limits often exceed the limits that tires on commercial tractor-trailers are designed to handle, creating a higher risk of tire blowouts and crashes. Compounding the problem is a lack of knowledge from state regulators and legislators who don’t know anything about truck tire endurance speed ratings, and truck drivers themselves who have no idea how much speed their truck’s tires can safely handle. Truck tires are almost always built to handle a maximum speed of 75 mph. But since the mid-2000s states have been allowed to boost their speed ... Read More

Tractor trailer multi-vehicle crash near Savannah kills five nursing students

Savannah crash - victims - WSBTV image

Flags flew at half-staff across Georgia Thursday following a crash near Savannah that resulted in the deaths of five Georgia Southern University nursing students early Wednesday morning. Investigators believe the chain-reaction crash started with a tractor trailer slamming into slowed traffic. The crash occurred at 5:45 a.m. on Interstate 16 near Savannah where the students were headed for their last day of clinical rotations at St. Joseph’s Hospital. Four women died at the scene of the crash and three others were rushed to a Savannah hospital, where a fifth student died. Authorities identified the deceased students as Caitlyn Baggett, 21, of ... Read More

Blue Bell recall expanded to all products

Blue Bell Recalled Products

After initiating two large recalls and suspending operations at an Oklahoma plant, Blue Bell will now be recalling all of its products in order to implement a “test and hold” procedure. The process will allow Blue Bell time to test all of its many ice cream products and determine which are safe and which are not. According to Blue Bell’s press release, all of its ice cream, frozen yogurt, sherbet and frozen snacks are included in this recall due to the potential presence of Listeria monocytogenes, which causes the infection Listeriosis. The ingestion and infection of Listeria monocytogenes in a ... Read More

Despite IUD side effects, more teen girls using device for pregnancy prevention

mirena IUD

Despite IUD side effects, more teenage girls are using intrauterine devices for pregnancy prevention, according to a new report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). According to the report, 7.1 percent of teens who were using birth control were using IUDs or implants compared to just 0.4 percent of teens in 2005. And, these methods varied widely by state. For example, in 2013, more than a quarter of teenagers who used birth control in Colorado chose IUDs or implants compared to just 0.7 percent in Mississippi. IUDs are implanted in a woman’s cervix and, depending on the brand, ... Read More

BP oil spill still destroying Gulf habitats, wildlife

BP oil spill litigation

A five-year cycle of contamination and erosion set in motion by BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil spill has decimated a small island that once held thriving colonies of brown pelicans, gulls, and wading birds in Louisiana’s Barataria Bay. Restore the Mississippi River Delta Coalition, an environmental watchdog and advocacy group comprised of officials from the Environmental Defense Fund, the National Audubon Society, the National Wildlife Federation, the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana, the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation, and Restore or Retreat last week sponsored a press trip across Barataria Bay from Port Sulphur to East Grand Terre Island. The Times-Picayune reported ... Read More

Fireman’s Fund pays $44 million to settle insurance fraud allegations


An insurance company that sells federally reinsured policies nationwide to farmers in need of crop insurance has agreed to pay the U.S. $44 million to settle False Claims Act allegations that it knowingly issued ineligible policies and falsified documents to boost its profits. According to the U.S. Justice Department, Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company, an Allianz SE subsidiary headquartered in Novato, Calif., participated in the federal crop insurance program, selling and servicing crop insurance policies that were reinsured by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for a portion of the risks. U.S. prosecutors alleged that the insurance fraud scheme involved Fireman’s Fund ... Read More

Oil train derailment, explosion in Illinois

railroad tracks

GALENA, Ill. — A freight train hauling 103 tanker cars full of crude oil derailed and caught fire Thursday afternoon in an isolated wooded area south of Galena, Ill. Burlington Northern Santa Fe, the operator of the train, reported that the oil train derailment occurred about 1:20 p.m. in an area where the Galena River meets the Mississippi River in the northwestern corner of Illinois. The railroad company said eight of the tanker cars left the track. Two of those remained upright while six had toppled over. It was not known how much crude has spilled from the derailed cars. ... Read More