Pharmacy owner admits guilt in nursing home scheme

May 2, 2014

A Louisiana pharmacy owner recently pled guilty to charges she bribed nursing home workers to return unused drugs, then repackaged and resold them as new.

A Louisiana pharmacy owner recently pled guilty to charges she bribed nursing home workers to return unused drugs, then repackaged and resold them as new.

According to the Department of Justice, Mona Patrice Carter, 47, pleaded guilty to what amounted to a $2.2 million Medicare fraud scheme. Carter, owner of Community Pharmacy 1 in Baton Rouge, is awaiting sentencing.

Carter admitted paying workers at nursing homes and mental health facilities to collect and return unused prescriptions to her pharmacy. Allegedly, she paid the workers either $100 or $300.

“These unused medications - some of which were expired - were often returned to CP1 in large garbage bags,” the plea agreement stated. “Once CP1 received these unused medications, CP1 employees, acting under Carter’s direction and supervision, placed them in new blister packs and affixed new labels to them.”

She then dispensed the medications as new and rebilled Medicare. Between 2008 and 2013, her pharmacy was reimbursed for approximately $2.25 million in fraudulent charges.

 

“She admits she broke the law, conduct very out of character for her,” Carter’s attorney, Jim Boren, reportedly said. “She hopes she is judged based on all of her life, not just this one thing. She accepts responsibility for her actions and apologizes to everyone her actions have impacted.”

Carter faces up to 10 years in prison.