Thursday, August 20, 2009

PP Silent on Plans to Repay Medicaid on Eve of Deadline

Today is the day that Planned Parenthood of Spokane either has to send a check for $629,000 to the Department of Social and Health Services for the overbillings found in the recent audit, or file an appeal.

Repeated inquiries to both Planned Parenthood and the group's attorney, David B. Robbins, have gone largely ignored. We have left numerous messages with Anna Franks, the acting president of PP of Spokane, asking what they plan to do. Ms. Franks, who runs PP of Central Washington, took over PP of Spokane about the same time the financial scandal became publicized, though she claimed the one thing had nothing to do with the other, according to the Spokane Spokesman-Review.

While Ms. Franks repeatedly described the audit as "routine" in her sole public statement on the issue, she has declined interviews, and claimed she was "strongly" considering appealing the findings. She did not give any indication as to which of the five separate categories of overbilling she disputed.

While Mr. Robbins is an expert at defending clients accused of Medicaid fraud, he suggested we not read too much into that, claiming he is equally experienced at helping clients with more basic Medicaid overbilling issues. (That was the only correspondence we received from him that even partially constituted an answer to our questions.)

We will find out by the end of the day whether DSHS has received a check, but either way, we are still eagerly anticipating word from Washington Medicaid director, Doug Porter, as to whether or not the state is going to bring fraud charges against Planned Parenthood, whether they are investigating other PP affiliates in the state for similar patterns of overbilling, and whether or not they are extending the overbilling investigation for Spokane beyond the period of the audit, which just covered three years from 2004 to 2007.

2 comments:

Profile said...

Hello Jonathan,

I'm a freelance writer for the Christian Examiner, http://www.christianexaminer.com/, and I'm writing a story on this situation. I understand The Planned Parenthood abortion clinic in Spokane was hit with a $700,000 fine from the state health department for overbilling Medicaid for abortions and other services. Would you be willing to provide your perspective on this that I could quote in my article? I would appreciate it if you could email me back as soon as possible at Kathrynwallace08@gmail.com

What was your role in this investigation? I understand you obtained copies of audit documents that revealed this scam.

What was the extent of Planned Parenthood's fraudulent behavior?

Also, how will this impact Planned Parenthood as an organization?

In your opinion, how will it affect the general public?

I really appreciate the information; your personal feedback will be a valuable aspect of the article.

Thanks!
Katie Wallace
Kathrynwallace08@gmail.com

chimakuni said...

Katie - you ask some great questions...especially how this situation will affect the general public.

My prayer is that it shuts this particular killing field down ...

As far as how it will affect Planned Deathhood as an organization? They will just continue to earn money off the blood of the innocents and fight this with attorneys, spending far more than they would have had they paid the fine up front.

Just my personal opinion...