Briefs

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Saturday, January 31, 2004

Florida man sentenced in 'mammoth' fraud case

MIAMI - A man convicted of health care fraud and conspiracy will spend the next nine years in prison and the rest of his life repaying the U.S. government $36.5 million he grossed from one of the largest Medicare fraud scams in history, reported the Miami Herald. Alfredo Omar Rodriguez, 38, was sentenced in January after he pleaded guilty to health-care fraud and conspiracy charges in September. Rodriguez masterminded a mammoth operation, overseeing 18 Miami-Dade medical supply firms that paid off thousands of elderly clients who filed bogus knee claims. The companies billed the government for $1,200 orthotic braces even though the clients received, at most, an Ace bandage.
Silicone implant proposal nixed by FDA

WASHINGTON - The Food and Drug Administration has rejected Inamed’s bid to bring silicone gel breast implants back to the market. The decision, announced in early January, came just three months after FDA advisers narrowly recommended a return for the implants, which had been banned in 1992 due to safety concerns over their tendency to break and leak. Inamed had argued that the implant’s safety record showed that they were no more a health hazard than saline implants. The FDA said it would further review the issue if more information regarding safety concerns were brought forward. Inamed officials said they would continue to seek approval.
Outtakes

FutureHealth Corporation was awarded the Disease Management Leadership Award by the Disease Management Association of America. FutureHealth’s submission, Diabetes HealthModel: Quantifying Cost Avoidance, was recognized as the “best enabling tool in disease management.”... Xopenex, a new levalbuterol bronchodilator, was approved by the FDA as a new treatment for asthma. The drug, created by Sepracor, is purported to work faster and last longer than albuterol... Walgreens Health Initiatives has acquired selected assets of All Care Medical Supply, a home medical equipment and respiratory business that has operated in Daytona Beach, Okeechobee and Stuart, Fla., for the past 10 years.

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