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POLLColumbia/HCA whistleblowers stunned Rick Scott is atop FL governor polls

Naples News, August 3, 2010

A whistleblower in the Columbia/HCA fraud case said Rick Scott should have known of billing practices at his hospitals that cheated the federal government out of millions of dollars. “He was a fairly hands-on CEO,” said John Schilling, a former reimbursement supervisor in the Fort Myers division office. “He should have known being CEO of a multibillion-dollar company. He should have known what is on his balance sheet.”  Former corporate insiders are bewildered by Scott’s candidacy for Florida governor, let alone his dramatic rise in the polls. Voters are seemingly discounting Scott’s forced resignation in 1997 shortly after the FBI began widespread raids of Columbia/HCA offices. Ultimately, the largest for-profit hospital chain in the United States paid a record $1.7 billion in criminal and civil fines for Medicare fraud. In television ads and on the campaign trail, Scott has repeatedly said he takes responsibility for what happened at the company and says he learned from it.