Ocean Mind and Body and Laura Rausa Agreed to Pay $62,000 for Allegedly Violating the Civil Monetary Penalties Law by Falsely Certifying to Their Eligibility to Receive CARES Act Provider Relief Funds
On December 9, 2021, Ocean Mind and Body (Ocean) and Laura Rausa (Rausa), Encinitas, California, entered into a $62,528.73 settlement agreement with OIG. The settlement agreement resolves allegations that Ocean and Rausa knowingly made, used, or caused to be made a false statement in a document that is required to be submitted in order to directly or indirectly receive or retain funds provided in whole or in part by the Secretary of HHS. Specifically, the OIG contends that in April 2020, Ocean, a medical supply company, received a Provider Relief Fund payment pursuant to the CARES Act. On April 28, 2020, Rausa, the Chief Executive Officer and owner of Ocean, attested in the HHS Provider Relief Fund Portal that Ocean was eligible to receive this payment because, among other things, it provides or provided after January 31, 2020, diagnoses, testing, or care for individuals with possible or actual cases of COVID-19. However, OMB did not provide diagnoses, testing, or care for any individuals after January 31, 2020. Senior Counsel Michael Torrisi, assisted by Chief Investigator Amber Mahmood and Program Analyst Mariel Filtz, represented OIG.
- Date:December 9, 2021
- CMP and Affirmative Exclusions,