ST. LOUIS — Centene Corp. (NYSE: CNC) will pay $165.6 million to Texas to resolve an investigation into whether the corporation’s business practices violated the state’s Medicaid fraud prevention law.
As part of the settlement, Centene made no admission of liability and maintained that its business practices were lawful.
The 24-page Texas agreement is the latest in which Centene has agreed to pay millions of dollars to resolve claims that its subsidiaries overcharged state Medicaid programs for pharmacy benefit management services. In the case of Texas, Paul Hurst last February filed an original petition as a qui tam action. In that type of litigation, a relator files a lawsuit on the government’s behalf. If successful, the relator bringing the suit receives a share of the award.
“Protecting taxpayer funds and the financial integrity of the Texas Medicaid Program is a top priority for my office,” Attorney General Ken Paxton said in a statement Monday. “The results we achieved in this case send a clear message to providers that Texas expects transparency from its Medicaid partners as required by Texas law.”
The settlement – which was reached in July and announced on Monday by Paxton – says the state of Texas, Hurst and their respective counsel will determine the allocation of the $165.6 million. Centene agreed to make the payment in two installments – on Aug. 15 and on that same date next year.
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