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Thu Nov 9, 2017, 04:08 PM

Tribe threatens to ban hospital officials over contract controversy

A man who was involved in a $10 million false-claims scandal is now in charge of staffing the emergency department at a Native American hospital in South Dakota and another one in Nebraska, and a South Dakota tribe has reacted by threatening to ban some Indian Health Service officials from the tribe’s reservation.

The controversy centers on John Shufeldt, the CEO and chief medical officer of Tribal Emergency Medicine, aka Tribal EM, of Scottsdale, Ariz. His company was one of two selected Sept. 27 by the federal government’s Indian Health Service to compete for task orders at hospitals in Pine Ridge and Rosebud in South Dakota, as well as Winnebago, Neb., and Fort Yates, N.D.

This week, in response to Journal questions, the IHS said Tribal EM has been awarded a 90-day, $1.63 million task order to staff the emergency department at Rosebud and a 90-day, $997,920 task order to staff the emergency department at Winnebago. The sum of the company's two 90-day task orders is about $2.63 million, and each task order is renewable for up to a year. The task orders require the company to provide 24-hour operational staff including physicians, physician assistants, nurses and medical support assistants.

Before Shufeldt founded Tribal EM, he was the founder and CEO of a multistate chain of urgent-care clinics called NextCare. In 2012, the company paid $10 million to settle allegations that it scammed the federal government by conducting unnecessary medical tests on patients and collecting payments for those tests from government programs including Medicare and Medicaid.

Read more: http://rapidcityjournal.com/news/local/tribe-threatens-to-ban-hospital-officials-over-contract-controversy/article_b7cd22a3-cbf5-5815-87d2-2aece102f612.html

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