A federal judge gave an occupational therapist the green light this week to begin gathering evidence against the nation’s largest nursing home operator and contract physical therapy company for submitting false Medicare and Medicaid claims for years. Ricia Johnson an Occupational Therapist filed the lawsuit against Aegis Therapies Inc. which provides rehab services at more than 1,000 nursing homes in 37 states. She alleges that the company billed the government for services that were not performed and also encouraged therapists to schedule more therapy than was medically necessary to make more profit. In some cases, she alleges, the therapy was so intensive it harmed the patients. The lawsuit alleges that similar practices took place in diffierent facilities as well.