A federal grand jury in Baton Rouge has returned an indictment charging a local doctor and one of his employees with submitting $4.4 million in fraudulent medical claims to Medicare and various private insurers. The doctor and his employee are now facing charges of having committed several federal crimes in connection with fraudulent billing for medical services.
The physician is a part owner of a pain management clinic in Baton Rouge. He and his billing supervisor are accused of a number of fraudulent billing practices. In some cases the physician allegedly instructed employees to prepare a false record showing that he had performed minor surgeries on patients on separate days, when in fact the surgery was performed during a single office visit. He is also charged with submitting claims for urinalysis tests that were medically unnecessary. The allegedly false claims were submitted to Medicare and private insurers. The indictment states that the total amount of fraudulent claims was $4.4 million.
The investigation that led to the indictment is part of a joint local, state and federal campaign known as the 2017 National Healthcare Fraud Takedown. Federal, state and local law enforcement agencies cooperated with one another in investigating and charging more than 400 individuals with wire fraud, healthcare fraud and related crimes.
An indictment is not a finding of guilt; it is merely a listing of the government's allegations that a crime has been committed. The individuals charged in this case are entitled to the presumption that they are innocent unless and until they are found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Anyone facing similar charges may benefit from consulting an experienced criminal defense attorney. A knowledgeable lawyer can provide a helpful analysis of the facts and evidence that will decide the outcome of the case and an estimate of the likelihood of obtaining a favorable plea agreement or outright acquittal.
Source: WAFB, "Baton Rouge doctor indicted in $4.4M scheme to submit false claims to Medicare," Rachael Thomas, July 13, 2017