List of Phony Florida Nursing Schools in FBI’s Operation Nightingale Investigation Now Over 21 Schools

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law

Our firm has been involved in defending nurses and nursing students who have been caught up as victims in the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) Operation Nightingale case.  Thousands of nurses were preyed on and victimized by the owners and operators of businesses around the country who were, apparently, associated with and fed students and money to, the ones operating in Florida.

I recently wrote a blog listing 19 schools and/or businesses involved as reported out in various publications and informational releases by various state boards of nursing.  To read this blog, […]

By |2024-06-10T16:05:30-04:00June 10, 2024|Nursing Law Blog|

Health Professionals Should Stay Off of TikTok, Face Book and Other Social Media Says Health Lawyer

Attorney and Author George F. Indest III HeadshotBy George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law and Hartley Brooks, Law Clerk, The Health Law Firm

My firm has recently seen a significant increase in the number of investigations opened by state licensing boards over videos and even still photographs posted on social media or shared in chat rooms and listservs.

Unless you have a full-time public relations specialist who is also familiar with the rules, regulations, and laws governing your profession (and I am pretty sure you don’t), my advice is to stay off it.


Recent Cases Resulting In Investigations.

Here are a few of our […]

By |2024-06-10T16:01:42-04:00June 10, 2024|The Health Law Firm Blog|

Florida Men Sentenced to Prison for Their Roles in TRICARE Prescription Fraud

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law

On November 17, 2023, three Florida men were sentenced to prison for their roles in a prescription drug scheme in which they paid and received bribes and kickbacks. They were each charged in an indictment filed in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, with one count of conspiracy to defraud the United States and to pay or receive health care kickbacks.

The Florida Men Involved.

One of the men involved in the scheme, James Wesley Moss, was the CEO and part-owner of the pharmacy involved in the alleged fraud. David Byron Copeland was the […]

By |2024-06-10T15:48:44-04:00June 10, 2024|The Health Law Firm Blog|

NY Court Rules Doctor Can Subpoena Yelp for User Info in Defamation Suit

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law

On October 7, 2021, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York ruled that Yelp is subject to a subpoena to reveal the names of anonymous users who left negative reviews for a doctor and his medical practice. The federal court judge found that the statements in the reviews made on Yelp contained factual claims that the doctor did have a legal right to contest in court. This is a factor that is usually missing in such cases. Accordingly, a motion for expedited discovery filed by the plaintiff physician was granted by […]

By |2024-06-04T20:00:13-04:00June 6, 2024|Dental Law Blog|

Texas Hospital’s Vaccination Mandate For COVID-19 Upheld by Federal Court

George Indest HeadshotBy George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law

As some states lift COVID-19 restrictions, the business community is still grappling with the dynamic between the COVID-19 vaccine and workplace operations. To address this, some U.S. employers have elected to adopt mandatory vaccination policies. These policies, in essence, require that, subject to a few exceptions, all employees must receive the COVID-19 vaccine as a condition of continued employment.

Not surprisingly, we see various legal challenges to mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policies across the country. On June 12, 2021, a federal court in Texas became the first to rule on the permissibility of such policies […]

By |2024-06-01T20:00:24-04:00June 3, 2024|Nursing Law Blog|

Humana Agrees To Pay $11.2 Million Settlement to End Nurses’ Overtime Suit

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law

On September 27, 2021, Humana agreed to pay $11.2 million to end claims that the health insurance company denied a group of nurses overtime pay by misclassifying them as exempt employees. A Wisconsin federal judge approved the deal with Humana, and a group of more than 200 nurses reached, securing a $36,000 average payment for each nurse involved in the suit.

A Violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

This dispute stems from a class-action lawsuit filed in 2017 alleging that Humana misclassified its clinical nurse advisers as exempt employees and denied them overtime compensation, violating […]

By |2024-05-31T20:00:09-04:00June 2, 2024|Mental Health Law Blog|

Phony Florida Nursing Diploma Scam: Federal Criminal Indictments in “Operation Nightingale”

Attorney George F. Indest III Headshot

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law

In January 2023, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced the prosecution of a massive fake nursing diploma scheme against three Florida-based nursing schools. The investigation has now expanded to include at least eight (8) nursing schools.

The investigation has now resulted in charges against 25 people in five states and found evidence that they allegedly worked to “sell” more than 7,600 fake diplomas, along with school transcripts, between 2016 and 2021. Click here to learn more.

The Federal Indictment.

We have obtained a copy of the federal […]

By |2024-05-24T20:02:32-04:00May 26, 2024|In the News, Nursing Law Blog|

25 Charged in Massive Fake Nursing Diploma Scheme in Florida

Author HeadshotBy George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law

On January 25, 2023, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG) launched a multi-state coordinated law enforcement action to apprehend individuals engaged in a scheme to sell false and fraudulent nursing degree diplomas and transcripts. The enforcement action resulted in the execution of search warrants in Delaware, New York, New Jersey, Texas, and Florida. 25 individuals have been charged in the Southern District of Florida for their alleged participation in a fraud scheme that created an illegal licensing and employment shortcut for aspiring nurses.

The defendants include “owners, operators, and […]

By |2024-05-22T20:02:01-04:00May 24, 2024|Health Facilities Law Blog|

HHS Releases Final Substance Use Disorder Confidentiality Rule

Attorney and Author George F. Indest III HeadshotBy: George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law
On February 8, 2024, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released a final rule modifying the Confidentiality of Substance Use Disorder (SUD) Patient Records federal regulations (42 C.F.R. Part 2). The new regulation will supposedly help ensure that health care providers have more complete information when treating patients with substance use disorders and improve that regulations compatibility with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Privacy Regulations.
Background.
The SUD final rule came out of the bipartisan Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), which, […]
By |2024-04-18T14:29:51-04:00May 23, 2024|Nursing Law Blog, Pharmacy Law Blog|

Manager of Dental Office Sentenced to Prison for Defrauding Medicaid Out of More Than $813,000

George Indest Headshot

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law

On October 1, 2021, a former dental office manager was sentenced to 12 months in prison for her role in a Medicaid fraud scheme. Mahsa Azimirad, was the office manager for Universal Smiles, a D.C.-based dental practice, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for Washington, D.C.

She was indicted in January 2019, along with the dentist who ran the practice. The dentist pleaded guilty in May 2021 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia and reportedly admitted that she received over $813,000 through false billings.

The Fraudulent Billing Scheme.

Both the office manager and […]

By |2024-05-19T20:00:19-04:00May 21, 2024|Health Facilities Law Blog|
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