Indian American Doctor Pleads Guilty to Healthcare FraudTop Stories

September 21, 2018 10:46
Indian American Doctor Pleads Guilty to Healthcare Fraud

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An Indian American lady doctor from Florida has pleaded guilty to a health care fraud, the Justice Department has said.

Dr. Jayam Krishna Iyer will face a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison, or 20 years if her offense involves earnest bodily injury.

According to the plea on Tuesday, the 66-year-old doctor has agreed to surrender both her Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) registration number that she used to prescribe controlled substances and her Florida medical license, and to a lasting exclusion from the Medicare and Medicaid programmes, the department said in a press release.

Iyer owned and ran Creative Medical Centre, a pain management clinic located at Druid Road East in Florida's Clearwater area.

The release said she billed Medicare and Medicaid for office visits, tests and services provided to patients using her National Provider Identification (NPI) number, and wrote prescriptions for controlled substances.

Between July 2011 and December 2017, Iyer executed and carried out a scheme to defraud Medicare by billing for face-to-face office visits with Medicare beneficiaries, when, in point of fact, certain patients did not go to her office and were not examined by her on the claimed dates.

Instead, family members of the patients went to Iyer's office with notes requesting her to issue and give prescriptions, as well for controlled substances like oxycodone, a painkiller.

Iyer used to issue those prescriptions, thereby violating a Florida law that needed doctors to execute an in-person office visit and examination of each patient before issuing controlled substance prescriptions.

She also falsified her electronic medical records, including vital statistics, to make it seem that the patient was present in her office.

Iyer submitted nearly USD 51,500 in these types of false and fraudulent Medicare claims, the release said.

By Sowmya Sangam

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