The following is A SCHEME TO DENY MENTAL HEALTH CARE IN ILLINOIS TO PERSONS ON MEDICAID.
Illinois has essentially de facto suspended Dr. Bennett’s Constitutional right to relief from a wrongful conviction by a Habeas petition. Attorney General Lisa Madigan has committed fraud upon the court and the Cook County Circuit Court Judge Lon Schultz has violated Federal and State law, the Constitution, and all morality by convicting her on a charge of Medicaid vendor fraud.
Please read this carefully and write the Asst. U.S. Attorney General in Chicago, Patrick Fitzgerald – Office of U.S. Attorney General, 219 S. Dearborn, Fifth Floor, Chicago, Illinois, 60604; Director of the Chicago FBI, Robert Grant and the Director of the Task Force on Public Corruption, Special Agent Casanovich, Chicago FBI, 2111 S. Roosevelt Road, Chicago, Illinois 60608, as well as inform the press with letters and phone calls about this gross injustice. Help me disseminate this information far and wide around the world, until agents of the United States government intervene to stop this injustice.
HABEAS LAW VIOLATED
In March 2009 Dr. Maisha Hamilton Bennett filed a petition for writ of habeas corpus (the grand writ guaranteed by the United States Constitution) in the Illinois Court system. It found its way to the Chancery Court Division of the Cook County Circuit Court before Judge Stuart Palmer. A habeas petition is a last resort step when the court system has failed to free an innocent person or a person whose rights under the Constitution’s Bill of Rights were so violated that they were denied a fair trial.
Illinois law requires the petition to be heard “promptly” and the warden to bring the prisoner before the court, the court to order the State to produce evidence that the person is being legally held, and allow the prisoner to rebut this evidence and prove he/she has been illegally held because they are actually innocent, the indictment was invalid, no crime was alleged, the court had no jurisdiction, or the Bill of Rights was violated and the person did not receive a fair trial. See: 735 ILCS 5/10‑103, 106, the Illinois Habeas Statute. See: http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=073500050HArt%2E+X&ActID=2017&ChapAct=735%26nbsp%3BILCS%26nbsp%3B5%2F&ChapterID=56&ChapterName=CIVIL+PROCEDURE&SectionID=62279&SeqStart=73000000&SeqEnd=76800000&ActName=Code+of+Civil+Procedure%2E .
To date Judge Palmer has refused to hear the habeas petition, recently transferred it to criminal court, where presiding criminal court Judge Biebel is also delaying hearing the petition for weeks to months. The law actually says that any judge who refuses to hear the petition “promptly” shall be referred to the States Attorney or Attorney General for prosecution of this illegal act and when found guilty should be fined $1000 and the money paid to the prisoner.
WRONGFUL CONVICTION DR. BENNETT FOR MEDICAID FRAUD WHEN SHE WAS ACTUALLY PROVIDING EXCELLENT MENTAL HEALTH CARE
Dr. Bennett is innocent because the indictment is legally void – it didn’t adequately state the facts charged so was impermissibly vague, the Federal Medicaid Law allows the conduct that the State says is criminal – thus the Constitutional Supremacy clause was violated – state laws are invalid if they go against federal law, the trial was conducted unfairly, the alleged prosecutor, Attorney General Lisa Madigan violated the law and committed extreme prosecutorial misconduct and the court had NO jurisdiction as a result. For case law and detailed discuss of Code pertaining to Federal Medicaid Code see:
1) Memisovski v. Maram, [Transfer Binder 2004-2] Medicare & Medicaid Guide (CCH) ¶ 301,515, in that it violates 42 U.S.C. 1396a(a)30(A) – Federal Judge Joan Lefkow ruled in 2004 that the Illinois Medicaid Rules violate the Federal Medicaid Code in that they deny access to care to persons on Medicaid for their medical insurance;
2) http://illinoiscorruption.blogspot.com/2008/10/criminal-scheme-of-il-attorney-general.html and;
3) http://illinoiscorruption.blogspot.com/2009/02/judge-jorge-alonso-overturns-federal.html .
Dr. Bennett was wrongfully convicted of Medicaid vendor fraud in 2003 and is being held in jail without bond. (Now for over 18 months) She is alleged to have ghost-billed for mental health services either not done or done by non-physicians in her practice group practice – she is a Ph.D psychologist and owner of the group, Hamilton Wholistic Healthcare, and alleged to have caused bills to be sent to Medicaid under the name of the practice’s medical director, a physician, who did not see the patients.
The facts are that Hamilton Wholistic Healthcare was an Illinois Certified Alcohol and Drug Treatment Center run by Trinity Hospital and then when Trinity pulled out, run by Hamilton Wholistic Healthcare. It was an INPATIENT center. Counselors who were M.S. and Ph.D. psychologists as well as physicians when they needed medication treated the patients. The patients’ children were also evaluated and treated with counseling or the parents were counseled. The law allows a service provider to bill the insurer for providing service to the child when the parent is counseled without the child present. The AMA code book for services states this fact. Insurance companies pay these bills with no problems.
The State put a grandmother on the stand, who was caring for several grandchildren while their mother was in the inpatient drug-treatment center, and she said she was not aware the children were counseled when they visited their mother in the inpatient center. This was the “basis” for the ghost-billing charge. Under federal HIPAA laws the mental health counselors and doctors are NOT ALLOWED to inform the grandmother as she was not the legally guardian. These privacy laws forbid discussions with the grandmother without the mother’s consent. The fact that she didn’t know did not prove anything. It certainly did not prove that the children or the mother were not counseled about how to deal with the drug-addicted mother or parenting. This was NOT explained to the jury.
The defense attorney was incompetent in that he failed to put on the stand the counselors so they could introduce the fact the kids and mother were counseled. The law DOES NOT ALLOW the attorney to place into evidence the medical record – only testimony about the medical record, in criminal trials. This is because medical records are considered hearsay and cannot be cross-examined. He failed to put on the stand the children who were then old enough to testify. He failed to put on the stand the mother.
The billing agent made an error that she admitted she did because the IL Medicaid Provider Service Unit representative told her to do it. This representative told the billing agent, Louise Moore owner of Data Medical Works, that only physicians names could be on bills, so Ms. Moore forged the signature of the medical director on a power of attorney form which allows Ms. Moore to put the doctor’s name on electronic bills, on a Blue Cross/Blue Shield electronic partner trading agreement which allows BC/BS to accept the bills over the wires (computer) on behalf of Medicaid, check them for errors as a service to Medicaid, and forward them to Medicaid. She also forged signatures on an alternate payee agreement so that the checks would be written by Medicaid to Hamilton Wholistic Healthcare instead of to the physician medical director. These checks were immediately deposited in the corporate bank account and not in Dr. Bennett’s bank account. None of this was told to the jury. Dr. Bennett was even charged with this forgery, but the charges of forgery were dropped. I saw the alleged forged documents. They had signatures that appeared to be in the handwriting style of Ms. Moore and many of the alleged invoices’ provider signature presented to the crime lab in the perjury charge appeared to be cut-outs from the handwriting exemplars (handwriting samples) that Ms. Bennett was forced to provide where she was told to write the medical director’s name 30 times or so on a piece of paper. Even my teenage son, at the time, was able to match specific signatures from the handwriting exemplars to specific invoices. The crime lab rejected the invoices for analysis because the man I suspect of fabricating them by cutting out handwriting exemplars, State Police Investigator William Reibel, refused to produce originals. That is why the charges were dropped, to my understanding.
Community alcohol and drug addiction treatment centers, per Illinois Statute, separate from the Illinois Medicaid Code, are allowed to bill Medicaid under their corporate name and not a doctor’s name and to bill for services of non-physician counselors and psychologists, as long as a physician medical director sets policy – not that she sees patients.
Hamilton Wholistic Healthcare sent patient encounter forms to Ms. Moore listing the counselor’s name and not the doctor’s name, for each clinic visit when a patient was seen by the counselor in or out of the inpatient center. Without Dr. Bennett’s knowledge (she was the CEO) Ms Moore changed the name of the provider counselor on the electronic bill she generated from these patient encounter forms to the name of the doctor medical director and sent them in to Medicaid electronically. Medicaid then paid Hamilton Wholistic Healthcare. The payments went as salaries to the counselors and to overhead. A small percent went to the CEO. The total amount received from Medicaid for several years was about $400,000.
Therefore, Dr. Bennett is innocent because she was not involved in putting the medical director’s name on the electronic bills. She did not profit from this error. The federal and state laws allow physicians to bill for their employees. Ms. Moore should have used the name of the corporation and not the name of the medical director on the electronic bills. There was clearly no intent to defraud. All services were actually provided and addicts received appropriate treatment, as did their children who needed counseling to cope with this situation of an addicted parent.
There was an administrative error that WAS NOT A CRIME in that the name of a physician medical director instead of the group name was put on the bill, by order of the Medicaid Provider Service Unit representative. All services were provided; only the incorrect provider name was on the electronic invoice, at the direction of Medicaid to Ms. Moore.
As 80 % or more of mental health services are provided by non-physician psychologists, psychiatric nurse counselors, psychiatric social worker counselors, drug-addiction counselors (all licensed in Illinois) and their supervised students, it is bizarre and simply wrong for the State to claim that ONLY physicians can provide mental health services and Medicaid won’t pay for non-physician services (unless provided by a certified and licensed community mental health center.) This would prevent access to care for Medicaid patients to ALL private psychologists, counselors, etc. This is simply a fraudulent scheme to deny mental health care to persons on Medicaid to save the Illinois budget. This is also a scheme AG Lisa Madigan uses to claim she is “tough on fraud” and to take advantage of the present climate of hating physicians. These fraudulent indictments of Psychologists and psychiatrist are used as a smoke screen and scapegoat to hide the fact Illinois is violating the Federal Medicaid Code and the Constitution. I was also fraudulently indicted, but found NOT guilty because I had a good attorney. Dr. Bennett did not have a good attorney.
The Illinois Attorney General’s statement about the conviction that Dr. Bennett is a scumbag who ripped the state off for $400,000 billing for mental health services for children that never were provided is nothing but a bald faced lie. AG Lisa Madigan should be impeached for fraud upon the court and fraud upon the public.
This is penny wise and pound foolish, as failure to treat mental health patients increases, suicide, family break-up, and crime, as well as increased cost to the state for welfare, criminal justice, prison, and hospital care.
Mental Health care in Illinois to poor persons is virtually non-existent. The United States healthcare system is in meltdown and our legislators are acting like children instead of addressing the issues. I miss Senator “Teddy” Kennedy deeply! God Help Us!