Kentucky based healthcare company agrees to pay nearly $9 million for claims improperly billed to Medicare

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Federal officials say the owner or operator of six Kentucky hospitals has agreed to pay $8.9 million for claims improperly billed to Medicare.

The U.S. attorneys' offices in Louisville and Lexington announced the settlement Thursday with Baptist Healthcare System Inc. and Hardin Memorial Hospital, under management of Baptist Healthcare.

Baptist Healthcare vice president of compliance Don Riggs said billing codes are complex and that after discussions and third-party reviews, Baptist decided it was best to settle.

Hospitals involved besides Hardin Memorial are five facilities owned by Baptist Healthcare - Baptist East in Louisville, Western Baptist in Paducah, Baptist Northeast in La Grange, Central Baptist in Lexington and Baptist Regional in Corbin.

The U.S. attorneys' statements said the company made no admission of liability in settling and that no issues of quality of patient care were involved.

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