MACON, Ga. (AP) — The federal government has joined a whistle blower lawsuit against two large hospital operators accused of filing fraudulent Medicaid and Medicare claims.

The False Claims Act lawsuit against Tenet Healthcare Corp. and four of its hospitals in Georgia and South Carolina, as well as a Georgia hospital owned by Health Management Associates Inc.

The suit alleges the hospitals entered into contracts with obstetric clinics that primarily serve women living in the country without authorization. The suit says the clinics then referred the women to the hospitals in exchange for kickbacks from fraudulent claims.

HMA has declined to comment on pending litigation. Tenet said when the suit was unsealed that it believes the agreements were appropriate.

(© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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