PERSONAL BAGGAGE
A Tale of Marriage, Medicine and Murder

Chapter Twenty-Six

This is a preview to the chapter Chapter Twenty-Six from the book PERSONAL BAGGAGE by Margaret McMillion.
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On Thursday morning her fatigue forgotten in the anticipation of reading Flossie Mae’s news, Penny hurried into the house. Scanning the kitchen for newspapers, she shed her jacket and spotted Johnny’s note on the counter. She leaned over it, the Formica cold on her elbows.

“Penny,
Your breakfast is in the refrigerator.
Please swing by The Athlete’s Store on your way to work tonight and pick up my seven bats, charged to the school.
Thanks, Johnny.
P.S. You’d better eat before you read the paper.”

Wednesday’s Jacksonville paper rested on the table and the words exploded in Penny’s mind:
“Mississippi Bureau of Investigation agents and U.S. marshals raided the office of Dixiana, Mississippi physician Samuel Scales and arrested him yesterday for allegedly defrauding the state-federal Medicaid program by submitting false claims. The arrest came after a year-long undercover probe.

“Documents allege that among the claims Scales submitted were charges for hospital admissions and patient visits supposedly performed while he was actually on a vacation in Georgia.

“An MBI employee visited Scales during the winter complaining of headaches. ‘She was with the doctor approximately three minutes,’ MBI special agent, Jack Byrd wrote. ‘An insurance claim was later submitted for X-rays and treatment of a broken arm. A most unusual claim was one for an ultrasound exam of the scrotum performed on a woman.’

“Dr. Scales, who also practices in Jacksonville, was released last night from federal custody after posting a $100,000 cash bond.
“Edwin York, special agent in charge of MBI’s Medicare fraud unit, says the case dramatically illustrates how some corrupt medical personnel abuse the system for their personal gain.”

Oblivious to taste, Penny consumed cheese-eggs, bacon, and toast as she reread the article. Corrupt–-they got that right! Patients must be protected from him.

Setting her alarm for 2 p.m., Penny sank into bed without bathing. Her body was too tired to move, but her mind wouldn’t shut off. She would get up and shower if she couldn’t sleep. Her arms and legs felt weighed-down and her shoulders ached. Her thoughts drifted.
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"In a story of evolving relationships, Margaret McMillion breathes life into her characters, especially Penny, who must find..."

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