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A doctor from Mississippi County was arrested Monday over accusations of involvement in a health care fraud scheme, authorities said.

Thomas Bailey, 52, of Lexa is one of five people accused of fraudulently billing for services not rendered and for providing false information for the purpose of requesting payment from a health plan, according to a news release from the office of Attorney General Leslie Rutledge. The money acquired in the scheme reportedly totals nearly $290,000.

In October, a former owner and administrator of Bridge of Faith Hospice and Palliative Care in Helena-West Helena was arrested in the case.

According to affidavits by an investigator with Rutledge's office, the hospice billed Arkansas' Medicaid program for $289,986.46 for services provided to two patients who were not terminally ill.

Bailey, the medical director for the hospice, signed paperwork indicating the patients were terminally ill, even though Bailey's own medical records, and those of other health care providers, didn't support that finding, the investigator wrote.

Tax records show the hospice paid Bailey $141,000 from 2010 through 2016, the investigator wrote. At the same time, Bailey improperly billed the Medicaid program directly for $6,280.12 for services he provided to the two patients, according to the affidavits.

The case was referred to the attorney general's office by the Mississippi County Medicaid Fraud Control Unit and is part of an ongoing investigation with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General.

Bailey's charges also include one count of engaging in a continuing criminal enterprise, the release said.

Bailey surrendered to Pulaski County authorities, authorities said. He was released from jail Tuesday after posting $5,000 bond, records show.

NW News on 03/08/2018

Print Headline: Lexa doctor arrested in Medicaid fraud case

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