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Lawsuit Alleges Medicare Fraud at Lawrence Memorial Hospital

The KHI News Service is an independent news agency, largely focused on health policy issues, based in Topeka.
The KHI News Service is an independent news agency, largely focused on health policy issues, based in Topeka.

A former nurse has filed a federal lawsuit against Lawrence Memorial Hospital. As Jim McLean of the KHI News Service reports, the lawsuit alleges the hospital falsified patient records so as to increase the Medicare payments it received from the federal government.


The lawsuit was filed on behalf of the federal government by Megen Duffy, a former emergency room nurse at Lawrence Memorial.  It says that the records of possible heart attack patients were manipulated to make it appear they were connected to E-K-G monitors the moment they arrived at the ER.  Doing that, the lawsuit says, qualified the hospital for higher Medicare quality-of-care incentive payments.  L-M-H spokesperson Janice Early says hospital officials haven’t yet seen the lawsuit.

     “But I can unequivocally state that the hospital has no such policy to falsify any kind of documentation to maximize reimbursement.”

Robert Collins is one of Duffy’s two lawyers.

     “We do know we’ve got some strong witnesses and some strong evidence to move forward with.”

Duffy worked at LMH from 2009 until she was fired in 2013 for allegedly threatening another employee. The lawsuit says the hospital “fabricated” the reason for Duffy’s firing.  I’m Jim McLean.

Want more?  Click here for a more in-depth version of this story, from the KHI News Service.


Jim McLean, Executive Editor of KHI News Service, oversees the KHI News Service. From 2005 until 2013, McLean coordinated all communications activities at KHI as Vice President for Public Affairs. The position he now occupies was created as part of a strategic initiative to solidify the editorial and operational independence of the KHI News Service. Prior to coming to KHI, McLean had a distinguished career as a journalist, serving as the news director and Statehouse bureau chief for Kansas Public Radio and a managing editor for the Topeka Capital-Journal. During his more than 20 years in Kansas journalism, McLean won numerous awards for journalistic excellence from the Kansas Press Association, regional chapters of the Society of Professional Journalists and the Kansas Association of Broadcasters. In 1997, McLean and two Capital-Journal colleagues received the Burton W. Marvin News Enterprise Award from the University of Kansas William Allen White School of Journalism for a series of stories on the state’s business climate. McLean holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Washburn University.