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Submitted by Newsroom on October 27, 2011 – 9:17 amNo Comment

HOSPITAL-FRAUD CHARGES

Whistleblower accuses Casper hospital of fraud

By The Associated Press

CASPER, Wyo. – A whistleblower has charged the Wyoming Medical Center with fraud. A federal lawsuit unsealed this week claims the medical center in Casper altered hospital records to collect higher fees from the Medicare and Medicaid programs by having its records clerks change the admission status of patients.

The lawsuit was filed in 2007 by a hospital worker. The document says changes allowed the hospital to seek about $10,000 in higher reimbursements from the federal insurance programs.

The whistleblower is a worker named Gale Bryden who has since left the hospital. She suspected the practice continued even after she notified top hospital administrators of the issue in the fall of 2006. She says she shared her concerns with Vickie Diamond, who was chief operating officer at the time and is now the hospital’s president.

Hospital attorney Dick Williams has denied any attempt by the hospital to defraud the government or private insurers.

CAPITOL SEAL

Newly set state seal slippery when wet

By The Associated Press

CHEYENNE, Wyo. – The season’s first snowfall has sent Wyoming officials scrambling to keep pedestrians from slipping on the highly polished stone of the official state seal inlaid this summer into the sidewalk in front of the state Capitol in Cheyenne. On Wednesday, orange cones stood around the roughly 12-foot diameter state seal.

Wyoming Capitol

Spokesman Chris Boswell says he doubts anyone thought about the potential problem in advance, but now officials are planning to develop a more attractive barrier to keep people safe during wet weather.

The slippery stone was installed as part of a renovation project that included new steps at the Capitol and installation of statues.

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