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Tue Jan 15, 2019, 06:19 AM

Eastern Shoshone Tribe accuses health care provider of overcharging members

CASPER — The Eastern Shoshone Tribe has accused Fremont County’s SageWest Health Care and its ownership of overcharging tribal members to the tune of a 700 percent profit margin. The hospital denies the allegations.

“We want to remind Apollo Global Management that Indian Country will not tolerate medical services being rendered to tribal communities and charging jaw-dropping rates that have allowed them to profit at an exorbitant and inappropriate rate,” the tribe’s business council said in a statement.

Last year, Apollo — a New York-based equity firm with nearly $250 billion in assets — acquired LifePoint, the for-profit owner of SageWest, which has hospitals in Lander and Riverton.

Matt Silverstein, the CEO of FirstNation Health, said the tribe conducted an audit of the tribe’s hospital bills and found errors in roughly 20 percent of the charges from SageWest. Profits reaped by the company from tribal patients topped 700 percent, he said. For one member, SageWest charged more than $120,000 to the tribe’s plan for services that cost the provider about $12,700.

Read more: https://www.gillettenewsrecord.com/news/wyoming/article_c34be99e-66c0-5e79-83a8-602c446fe101.html

Cross-posted in the First Americans Group.

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