The Medicare Fraud Strike Force recently announced the arrest of five New Yorkers based on charges of health care fraud. The arrests were part of a larger coordinated health care fraud enforcement action that led to the arrest of 48 individuals throughout the Northeast in connection to a scheme involving over $800 million in false and fraudulent claims.
Who did the government arrest?
The arrests include the following medical professionals:
- Registered nurse. Officials claim a registered nurse (RN) stole synthetic opioid fentanyl from a New York university medical center. The accused chose to accept a plea deal. The deal included an admission of guilt for stealing the medication from his employer and may have resulted in additional evidence to build charges against others involved in the alleged scheme.
- Anesthesiologist. Officials also arrested an anesthesiologist. The prosecution charged the doctor with health care fraud, stating the physician received illegal kickbacks in exchange for prescribing diagnostic test and prescription drugs that were not medically necessary.
- Neurologist. The prosecution also charged a licensed neurologist with health care fraud for falsely billing Medicare for over 3,000 claims for home health services and podiatry procedures that were never performed.
- Pharmacist. The government also stated a pharmacist involved in the scheme submitted claims for medications that patient ever received.
These arrests provide an example of the variety of medical professionals that can face allegations of wrongdoing. The government does not focus on one type of medical professional. Government agencies and groups, like the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, will investigate those accused of attempting to perpetrate fraud against the system.