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.