An employee should be able to have a certain level of trust with his or her employer. When you go to work, you likely expect your workplace to be safe and for the procedures in place to be appropriate and legal. It can be overwhelming to learn that this is not the case. If you discover that something illegal is happening at your place of work, such as health care fraud, you may be unsure of what to do next and how to protect yourself in this complex situation.
You may be concerned about the potential repercussions of reporting this type of fraud at your workplace. You may fear retaliation, loss of your job and other complications, and it is in your interests to know how you should proceed from this point. You have the right to speak out about unfair or illegal things you witnessed at work, as well as how to take steps to hold your California employer accountable.
Wrongful actions of health care providers
Health care providers have a duty to provide quality care and support to their patients. However, some doctors and other parties violate the trust of their patients and insurance providers by committing different types of health care fraud. This is an attempt to collect more money from the government or private insurance companies, and these schemes can result in the loss of millions of dollars. Common health care fraud schemes include:
- Misrepresentation of the person providing the medical service
- Billing for services not actually rendered
- Misrepresentation of the type of service provided to the patient
- Billing for services that were not medically necessary
- Seeking payments for services that should be at a lower rate
- Not bundling services that providers should bill together
These are all possible ways that your employer could commit health care fraud. If you work in a clinic, hospital or other type of medical-related workplace and you notice illegal activity taking place, you do not have to remain silent.
Blowing the whistle
It can be intimidating to be the one who blows the whistle and reports an employer for illegal activity. However, there are protections provided to you by the federal government that will prevent your employer from taking retaliatory action against you. Before you take action, you may benefit from seeking an understanding of your legal options, the protections available to you and your rights as a whistleblower.