Rick Perry has adopted a more behind-the-scenes approach this time around. That doesn't mean he hasn't been busy.
Hospitals, doctors and dealers have made Medicare the nation's sweetest crime. The feds are now trying to shutter the door.
No doubt some of you may want to know the many ways the Texas legislature is going to improve your opportunities this session to drink alcoholic spirits. Toss the kids and forget Medicaid, there's always one or two more ways to tinker with the state's alcoholic beverage code each session. No doubt, ... More >>
Advocates of Medicaid expansion -- part of Obama's Affordable Care Act -- continue to ply Texas lawmakers with economic numbers, making the point that the expansion of the program is not a cost, but a benefit, to taxpayers. Like Sisyphus eternally pushing his boulder up the hill, advocates for Medi ... More >>
The man who exposed a drug maker's fraudulent marketing of an antipsychotic drug that is still given to Texas's foster care children has won the Taxpayers Against Fraud Education Fund's Whistleblower of the Year Award. Allen Jones was forced out of his job at the Pennsylvania Office of Inspector G ... More >>
A man described by prosecutors as "a prominent Houston radiologist" has agreed to pay $650,000 to settle claims that he provided kickbacks to get physicians to refer business his way. Jack L. Baker of the Fairmount Diagnostic Center in Pasadena entered into the agreement today, settling claims file ... More >>
We have some great commenters here on Hair Balls, and it's time we paid some damn attention to them. So we'll be highlighting a Comment of the Day each morning or afternoon from the previous day's work. Maybe two comments, even. This will all be determined by a highly rigorous scientific formula i ... More >>
Governor Rick Perry has confirmed in a letter today to U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius that he's no pal of socialism and as such, must reject two key measures of Obamacare - a state insurance exchange and expanding Medicaid. To embrace a state exchange would mean playing ... More >>
A drug company accused of fraudulently promoting the antipsychotic Risperdal for use in Texas's Medicaid system has settled a state Attorney General's lawsuit for $158 million. The AG's office, one of several across the country to sue Janssen Pharmaceuticals (a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson) for ... More >>
The Texas Attorney General's Office says a drugmaker lied in order to push an antipsychotic on foster children. So why are kids as young as three still taking the drug?
Here's a riddle: If the Texas Attorney General sues a drug manufacturer for allegedly lying about the safety and efficacy of one of its antipsychotics, why would the state agency that oversees the foster care system still allow that drug to be given to kids as young as three? Why would the s ... More >>
Tweets don't fail me nowAs the GOP debates whether it wants the Tea Party to drive it (and the country) off a cliff by playing games with the debt ceiling, we looked to Twitter for the updates from our state's congresssional delegation. Oddly, the Republicans didn't tweet anything like "Yes, ... More >>
Christina Clardy among those convicted.Christina Clardy, a 61-year-old West U doctor, was convicted with two other people of running a massive Medicaid-and-money-laundering scam that somehow involved Nigerian tankers, the U.S. Attorney's Office announced today. Kenneth Anokam, 56, and Niger ... More >>
More bad news for women who rely on Planned Parenthood.A Texas Senate subcommittee wrangled the vulvas of Texas women into a chokehold yesterday with its latest assault on Planned Parenthood. Republican Senator Robert Deuell, who is a physician, introduced a bill to a three-member subcommitte ... More >>
In this family, missy, we scam the government with adult diapers!!!Keeping things in the family, passing knowledge from one generation to the next: It's a heartwarming American tradition, especially when it involves ripping off Medicaid for more than a million dollars with an adult-diaper sca ... More >>
Lawsuit over the state's medical care programsParents of a mentally handicapped man with cerebral palsy are suing Texas for cutting him from state-funded health care because he has turned 21. Richard Johnson requires 24-hour care and taking away his state-funded nursing care would create "an ... More >>
Courtesy of Montgomery County Sheriff's Office‚ÄčA former psychologist with the Mental Health and Mental Retardation Authority of Harris County, who evaluated defendants in close to 1,000 criminal cases during his time with the agency, recently pled guilty to Medicaid fraud. Matthew Leddy, the ... More >>
Get in, get out. Refugees have a shrinking window of support until it's time to fend for themselves.
Photo courtesy Montgomery County Sheriff's OfficeMatthew Leddy, a local psychologist, was arrested late last month for theft and Medicaid fraud, accused of billing for work that he didn't perform, according to articles in the Houston Chronicle and the Conroe Courier. The articles don't mention, howe ... More >>
A Bhutanese refugee has been holed up in his southwest Houston apartment for months, downing pain killers. This isn't the new life he had in mind. Rubber sandals cover the mat outside the spare, dim apartment. The man is embedded in an easy chair. He periodically winces and grabs his stomach. ... More >>
Places all over Houston want Trevor Falk and pitch the wonders of community life. He is 24 and has Down syndrome, which makes him a hot commodity for private group homes.
If you're going to try to defraud the government, please -- for your own self-esteem -- choose a more glamorous plan than one involving adult diapers.When the announcement came in from the US Attorney's Office headlined that a local company owner had been "INDICTED IN ADULT DIAPER FRAUD CASE," we co ... More >>
$800 million is a ton of money to settle a civil suit, but two Houston attorneys helped win a settlement of that size this morning.Joel Androphy, who specializes in whistleblower suits, worked with Sarah Frazier and won a big one as the drug giant Eli Lilly agreed to pay that whopping amount to sett ... More >>
Midwives further north say business is much better than for their counterparts to the south
Physically disabled young adults who weren't supposed to live this long find themselves hemmed in by an unprepared heath care system
Despite the bishopís remarks to the contrary, the Galveston-Houston Roman Catholic Archdiocese had child molesters and let them go. But donít blame just the Church.
Hopeful beggars shake their virtual cups online
A group of unsupervised mental patients running from Katrina made it from New Orleans to Houston. Victor Fruge led the way.
Plus: Junk Food, Junk Suits; Pigeon Hold, Meds for the Poor
Plus: Porn Priorities?, House Woes, Sit on It
Texas can't decide whether to pay for drug-resistance tests that could prolong the lives of those with HIV. For John Termine, it's already too late.
Area housing for the mentally ill remains deplorable, but a state subsidy might improve conditions
A contained experiment in Medicaid finally gets uncovered
Fed Up with Feds, Still Reeling, Diabolical Docs
Hospital district officials wanted a simple one-sentence policy on immigrant health care. What they got instead was a criminal probe and plenty of politics.
MHMRA restricts Medicaid services at mental health clinic pharmacies
Steve Chesser went to MHMRA for help. Sent home from its emergency clinic without medicine or therapy, he shot his and killed himself. Diagnosis: A mental health care system in free fall.
Blowing Smoke, Pay to Play, Ill Will
She got into a suspect nursing home. And the probate system got most of her money.
Rising asthma rates have experts scratching their heads - and children struggling to breathe
Texas Lottery. Let's buy our tickets and bet on the day that Robert Arthur Pearson finally kills himself in public while we all watch
Kosovar refugees in Houston fight to hang on in a land they don't understand
Mental health cuts may come back to haunt the public
Some ex-patients credit the mind-body therapy of New Age healer JoAnne Mandel with saving their lives. Others say her compassion stopped at the bottom line.
How slow turnings of tiny bureaucratic gears grind up real Texans
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