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Report Highlights Lack Of Addiction Treatment Oversight

Changes to how Florida regulates the private system of addiction treatment in the state could help stop patient abuse and exploitation. That’s the conclusion of newly released report by the Sober Home Task Force.

Mark Fontaine with the Florida Alcohol and Drug Abuse Association said due to the lack of oversight some people are making money off sick and recovering addicts.

“We’re concerned about the business practices that are taking place," he said. "You’ve been reading about those down in the South Florida corridor primarily and they’ll be some legislation related to that.”

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Fontaine said he hopes lawmakers stop the practice of brokers getting paid to convince patients to switch providers using gifts as incentives.

Several sober home operators have been arrested in the past few years in Palm Beach on patient brokering charges and billing insurance companies for medically unnecessary tests.

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Sarah Mueller is the first recipient of the WFSU Media Capitol Reporting Fellowship. She’ll be covering the 2017 Florida legislative session and recently earned her master’s degree in Public Affairs Reporting at the University of Illinois Springfield. Sarah was part of the Illinois Statehouse press corps as an intern for NPR Illinois in 2016. When not working, she enjoys playing her yellow lab, watching documentaries and reading memoirs.