Texas Nurse Exposes Medicaid Fraud for Trans Procedures

Texas Nurse Exposes Medicaid Fraud for Trans Procedures

A registered nurse at Texas Children’s Hospital (TCH) has accused the hospital of committing Medicaid fraud relating to gender-altering treatments for minors, joining a former resident surgeon at TCH who blew the whistle on the hospital and now also faces a federal investigation and federal charges.

The nurse, Vanessa Sivadge, says she was intimidated by FBI agents after corroborating allegations made by Dr. Eithan Haim that the hospital continued operating its gender clinic for minors after the state made it illegal. Sivadge now says she has evidence that TCH physicians fraudulently covered patients’ “sex-change” treatments under Medicaid, which is illegal in Texas—a claim also made by Haim, who is now in private practice.

In 2022, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton issued a formal opinion in which he classified gender-altering treatments on minors as “child abuse” under state law. In response, TCH’s CEO said the hospital’s child gender clinic was shutting down.

However, Haim, who then was completing his residency in general surgery at TCH, leaked documents to journalist Christopher F. Rufo that allegedly revealed the hospital had secretly reopened its gender clinic, continuing to prescribe puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones for minors, “including the use of implantable puberty blockers.”

After Haim blew the whistle, Sivadge came to Rufo, anonymously at first, specifically exposing one TCH doctor who allegedly continued pushing for transgender treatments for children despite the state’s prohibition.

Two months after Rufo and Sivadge spoke, two FBI agents showed up at Sivadge’s door, she said. Security footage shows the two men knocking on the door, flashing their badges, and proceeding to ask her about “some of the things that have been going on at [her] work lately.” They asked to come inside, where Sivadge claimed they threatened her.

“They promised they would make life difficult for me if I was trying to protect the leaker,” she said. “They said I was ‘not safe’ at work and claimed that someone at my workplace had given my name to the FBI.”

After this, Sivadge noticed that physicians who were continuing to provide gender treatments for patients over 18 seemed to be fraudulently covering these treatments with Medicaid.

“The largest children’s hospital in the country is illegally billing Medicaid for transgender procedures,” she told Rufo. “It is evident that the hospital continues to believe it is above the law not just by concealing the existence of their transgender medicine program from the public, but by stealing from the federal government.”

Meanwhile, Haim was indicted earlier this month by the Department of Justice on four felony counts, charging that Haim illegally obtained TCH medical records with malicious intent. He could spend up to 10 years in prison and face a fine of up to $250,000.

“Dr. Haim exposed illegal experimental gender surgeries on children at a Texas hospital & was indicted by [U.S. Attorney General Merrick] Garland,” wrote House Speaker Mike Johnson. “Biden’s DOJ has silenced opponents, gone after whistleblowers, & spied on parents & churchgoers. We must restore our justice system.”

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