The Party’s Over Volume 5, Issue 2
PHYSICIAN’S LICENSE REVOKED FOR CDS POSSESSION, ILLEGAL TRANSPORTATION OF CDS, UNAUTHORIZED PRACTICE AND ABANDONMENT OF PATIENT RECORDS In a Final Consent Order dated February 25, 2016, a physician’s voluntary surrender of his license was deemed to be a permanent revocation. The physician agreed to the facts alleged against him. He had been arrested for possession of drug paraphernalia and convicted in municipal court. Following the disposition in municipal court, laboratory analysis of the confiscated item (a glass pipe) revealed traces of methamphetamine. In the Consent Order, this conduct was deemed to constitute professional misconduct. The physician also transported Botox from New Jersey to Florida, and engaged in the unauthorized practice of medicine in Florida by conducting a “Botox party” and performing Botox injections at a private apartment. He was also found to be in possession of numerous testosterone compounds. Finally, the physician closed his New Jersey medical office without making arrangements for transfer of medical records, resulting in the abandonment of patients, and also left unsecured medical records, hypodermic needles and other medical paraphernalia in his vacated office. These accusations were alleged to have constituted professional misconduct in violation of multiple statutes and administrative regulations. He had previously been reprimanded and would have been adjudged a second offender had he challenged the charges brought against him. Despite being advised of his right to counsel, the physician elected to proceed without an attorney and entered into the Consent Order, agreeing that his license surrender would constitute a permanent revocation of his license to practice medicine and surgery in New Jersey, and that he would not seek reinstatement of his license.
IN OTHER NEWS…FEDERAL HEALTHCARE FRAUD CONVICTION RESULTS IN CONSENT ORDER OF REVOCATION In a Consent Order entered on March 18, 2016, a physician indicted on multiple counts of healthcare fraud agreed to surrender his license, which would be deemed a permanent revocation without a right to future reapplication. In a federal indictment, the physician was accused of multiple counts of having engaged in a scheme of healthcare fraud from 2005 until in or about June, 2015. The physician ultimately entered into a guilty plea to one count of healthcare fraud. In pleading guilty, the physician admitted to, from a period at least as early as 2005 and through in or about June, 2014, billing Medicare, Medicaid and other private payors for evaluation and management services in connection with physician office visits, when those office visits had not, in fact, occurred. The physician had submitted claims for face-to-face office visits for specific patients on specific dates, when he had written prescriptions, authorized refills on prescriptions or performed other tasks, all without ever seeing the patients, face-to-face, on these dates. Between January 2009 through and including October, 2013, the physician, by means of his misrepresentations to Medicare, Medicaid and various other private payors, defrauded these insurers out of approximately $280,000. The Board found the physician’s conduct, as admitted in the guilty plea in the federal criminal action, constituted the use or employment of dishonesty, fraud, deception, misrepresentation, false promise or false pretense; professional misconduct; failure to adhere to Board regulations; and an offense involving moral turpitude. This physician also entered into the Consent Order without the advice of counsel.
FEDERAL HEALTHCARE FRAUD AND MAIL FRAUD CONVICTION AND REVOCATION OF PHYSICIAN’S NEW YORK LICENSE RESULTS IN REVOCATION OF NEW JERSEY LICENSE By Final Order of Discipline dated March 2, 2016, the Board revoked a physician’s license to practice medicine and surgery in New Jersey. The physician had pled guilty to conspiracy to commit mail fraud and health care fraud in violation of federal law. The New York State Office of Professional Medical Conduct (“OPMC”) revoked the physician’s license. In addition to the criminal conviction, the OPMC relied upon the fact the physician had been involved in “several malpractice cases,” three of which resulted in patient deaths and judgments or settlements in excess of one million dollars, had a prior disciplinary history, had been terminated from her employment as a hospitalist by a New York hospital due to “poor job performance and concerns about her mental stability,” a “troubling degree of grandiosity” displayed in her thinking, and poor insight indicating a lack of knowledge of what is involved in creating a genuine medical practice. On the basis of the OPMC action, the New Jersey Board took reciprocal action, forwarding a Provisional Order of Discipline (“POD”) to the physician. The physician did not respond to the POD, and the Board entered a Final Order of Discipline, revoking the physician’s New Jersey license and requiring that, should she seek to re-apply, she must appear before the Board to establish that she is fit to practice medicine in New Jersey and that she holds an unrestricted license to practice in New York.