Boston hospital settles Medicare complaint


BOSTON (AP) — A Boston hospital has paid a $5.3 million to resolve allegations that it overcharged the Medicare system.

The Boston Globe ( ) reports that a federal review of records from Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center found the hospital frequently admitted patients for brief stays who could have been received treatment as outpatients at less expense to Medicare.

The hospital did not admit to any wrongdoing or liability in the settlement.

Beth Israel's general counsel, Jamie Katz, said in a statement that the hospital defended its decision to provide inpatient care when doctors believed it was appropriate for their patients.

But federal officials contend that unnecessary admissions for Medicare patients can boost hospital profits at the expense of taxpayers.