REDWOOD CITY, Calif. – San Mateo County Medical Center and San Mateo County will collectively pay $11.4 million in settlement fees to resolve allegations related to “medically unnecessary inpatient admissions.”

According to federal prosecutors, SMMC allegedly billed Medicare for non-covered inpatient hospital admissions from 2013 to 2017. The patients did not fall under Medicare because they were admitted for reasons that did not pertain to their diagnosis, including “social reasons and lack of available alternative placements,” said a news release from the Department of Justice.

“The financial viability of our Medicare program must be protected for current and future generations,” said U.S. Attorney Stephanie M. Hinds for the Northern District of California in a statement. “Medical providers, such as SMMC, who seek to pass on the financial burden of their medically unnecessary hospital admissions to the federal government will be pursued, as today’s settlement reflects.”

Source: KTVU