Oh, My Aching Feet

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There are more than 7,000 nerve endings in your feet, which provide the foundation for your entire body. When your feet ache, everything else feels the repercussions. An enterprising podiatrist in Pennsylvania took advantage of his patients’ aching feet to bill Medicaid, Medicare and other private insurances nearly $5 million for podiatric procedures either not performed at all or not medically necessary.

The former podiatrist ‘s scheme went on for more than six years. He carried out his ruse by giving his patients unnecessary injections in their toes and feet. (That hurts just thinking about it. Oh, my aching feet.) Then, he submitted the fraudulent bills to legitimize the need for opioid prescriptions, which he also prescribed. (So not only did he inflict unnecessary pain upon his patients, he also set them up for becoming addicted to an opioid.)

The former foot doc pleaded guilty to healthcare fraud and surrendered his Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) license, which enabled him to prescribe medications to treat pain and illness. (How about surrendering his license to practice medicine while he ‘s at it?)

He was sentenced to eight years in prison and must serve three years of supervised release following the completion of his prison term. He also must pay restitution in the amount of $4,960,295 and forfeit any assets that are traceable to the offense.

Just like foot pain can affect the whole body, fraud greatly impacts the government and its ability to serve American citizens. Fraudulent actions cause repercussions impacting honest taxpaying citizens as well, inflicting a debilitating blow to those who qualify for and deserve to receive government healthcare benefits. (Let ‘s hope that eight years of walking around on cold, hard, concrete floors without pain meds will give this former foot doctor a dose of his own medicine.)

Source: Today’s “Fraud of the Day” is based on an article entitled, “Former Delco Doctor Gets 8 Year Sentence For Healthcare Fraud,” published by The Springfield Patch on February 8, 2017.

A former Havertown podiatrist was recently sentenced to 8 years prison time after he defrauded Medicare, Medicaid and private insurances between 2008 and 2014.

According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office Eastern District of Pennsylvania, Stephen A. Monaco was sentenced to 97 months ,just over 8 years ,in prison after he pleaded guilty to healthcare fraud in August 2016 and surrendered his DEA license.

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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.