COVID Feature: Looking for a Cure

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Close-up Of A Doctor's Hand Analyzing Report On White Desk

You can be sure that everyone is searching for a COVID-19 cure. (Medical professionals and research scientists around the world are working on it, so there is no need to take things into your own hands.) The pandemic that has engulfed the entire world in anxiety has caused some individuals to fall for fraudulent COVID-19 cure claims. From ridiculous suggestions like drinking bleach or consuming rubbing alcohol to injecting disinfectants into the body, you can be sure that these irrational suggestions will only do you more harm than good. (Let’s be honest, these false cures could actually be more dangerous than the coronavirus.)

Dr. Charles Mok, 56, from Michigan had another idea on how to combat the worldwide disease – vitamin C infusions. The doctor administered high-dose intravenous vitamin C infusions to patients who were at risk of contracting COVID-19 or to those who already had the virus. (These were people typically serving on the front lines.)

Dr. Mok used videos to explain how his vitamin C infusions supposedly reduced the severity of symptoms, the duration of the illness and improved the immune system of those with a high risk for contracting the virus. (Let’s just say that if his medical treatment had been proven to prevent or treat the coronavirus, newscasters would have absolutely nothing to talk about on the nightly news these days.)

The doctor, who operated an Allure Medical Spa in Shelby Township, is charged with healthcare fraud and conspiracy to commit health care fraud for submitting false claims involving vitamin C infusions to Medicare. When he stands before the judge, he’ll have to account for what looks like putting the safety and health of his patients at risk so he could make an extra buck. While Dr. Mok is innocent until proven guilty, he’ll also have to explain why he allowed COVID-19 positive patients mingle in the waiting room with health patients who were waiting for non-essential elective procedures.

Here’s something important to note: The FBI has a tipline at AllureMedTips@ic.fbi.gov to provide the public with a method of reporting information on the business practices of Allure Medical Spa. The spa’s founder, Dr. Mok, also operated 26 outpatient clinics specializing in varicose vein treatments in eight different states. Six of the clinics are located within the State of Michigan.

Today’s Fraud of the Day comes from an article, “Michigan doctor charged with fraud after allegedly touting vitamin C infusions as coronavirus treatment,” published by Fox News on April 29, 2020.

A Michigan doctor has been charged with fraud after allegedly submitting false claims to Medicare for vitamin C infusions that he touted as coronavirus treatment and prevention, prosecutors announced Tuesday.

Dr. Charles Mok, 56, is charged with health care fraud and conspiracy to commit health care fraud, according to a 47-page complaint.

 

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Larry Benson, Senior Director of Strategic Alliances, LexisNexis Risk Solutions - Government

Larry Benson is responsible for developing strategic partnerships and solutions for the government vertical. His expertise focuses on how government programs are defrauded by criminal groups, and the approaches necessary to prevent them from succeeding.

Mr. Benson has 30 years of experience in sales and business development. Before joining LexisNexis® Risk Solutions, he spent 12 years founding and managing two software technology startups. During the 1990s he spent 10 years as a Regional Director helping to grow a New England-based technology company from 300 employees to 7,000. He started his career with Martin Marietta Aerospace working on laser guided weapons and day/night vision systems.

A sought-after speaker and accomplished writer, Mr. Benson is the principal author of “Fraud of the Day,” a website dedicated to educating government officials about how criminals are defrauding government programs. He has co-authored WTF? Where’s the Fraud? How to Unmask and Stop Identity Fraud’s Drain on Our Government, and Data Personified, How Fraud is Changing the Meaning of Identity.

Benson holds a Bachelor of Science in Physics from Albright College, and earned two graduate degrees – a Master of Business Administration from Florida Institute of Technology, and a Master of Science in Engineering from Lehigh University.