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Huge surgical fraud scheme alleged

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The Associated Press reports that “a physician assistant who wasn’t licensed or trained to perform surgery operated on hundreds of patients while the orthopedic surgeon who billed for the procedures schemed with colleagues to hide a massive insurance fraud conspiracy, Los Angeles prosecutors said.”

“Prosecutors opposed reducing bail Friday for 13 people who have pleaded not guilty in the $150 million fraud scheme and outlined the complexity of the operation that spanned a decade and led to unnecessary and scarring surgeries for unwitting patients.”

Prosecutors said that Dr. Munir Uwaydah and his associates prescribed unnecessary expensive medications, billed two-minute doctor’s appointments as hourlong examinations, and doctored MRI results and medical records to justify unnecessary operations.

The AP reported that “Fifteen people have been indicted in the scheme that paid marketers and workers’ compensation lawyers up to $10,000 a month in kickbacks to funnel patients to Uwaydah’s clinic. They got bonuses if the patients were candidates for surgery and additional cash if they received operations, the indictment said.”

How could something like this go on for a decade?




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