Former Fulton Hospital CEO Indicted for Health Care Fraud and Money Laundering

A former CEO of EmpowerHMS, who managed hospitals in Fulton and Sweet Springs is facing 23 federal counts including health care fraud and money laundering.

The indictment alleges Jorge Lopez and 9 others used hospitals as billing shells to submit 1.4 billion in fraudulent claims for laboratory testing.

According to prosecutors Perez’s company would take over rural hospitals in financial trouble and bill private insurance companies for blood tests done at facilities where they also controlled the billing and could charge substantially more than a third-party lab.

Investigators found many of the tests were not medically necessary.

The company is also accused of paying kickbacks to recruiters and health care providers in connection with the testing.

The Fulton Medical Center was purchased by a new management system in December and saved from closure.