You don’t need to look far to find the for-profit fabric of American healthcare fraying. Turning a service profession into a profit center has created opportunities for corruption at every level of healthcare – from doctors to hospitals to pharmaceutical companies.
While it’s true that some people don’t need much temptation to succumb to greed, even those who are committed to serving the sick – and vowed to “first do no harm” – can fall prey to an entire system built around pursuit of profit over people’s health.
Malpractice isn’t the only reason for a medical lawsuit to be filed. Bribery and kickbacks take center stage in the latest cases.
Doctors Taking Kickbacks for Lab Referrals
In June, New York family doctor Bret Ostrager was sentenced to 37 months in prison for taking bribes from a lab. The blood testing lab paid Ostrager over $100,000 in exchange for sending his patients to them. The federal prosecutors are saying it’s the largest medical bribery case they’ve ever tried.
Just down the New Jersey Turnpike from Ostager’s trial, another doctor was also caught with his hand in the cookie jar. Paresh Patel got a year in prison for kickbacks that paid for his home remodeling and property taxes. All Patel had to do was point his patients in the direction of the bribing lab for tests. The lab in question is also awaiting sentencing.
Biodiagnostic Roundup Nets 100% Guilty Pleas
Perhaps these crooked labs were inspired, John Dillinger-style, by a lab scam uncovered in 2013, perpetrated by Biodiagnostic Laboratory Services (BLS). Feds nabbed 22 doctors and 11 BLS employees running a $100 million kickback machine. So abundant was the evidence in this federal medical lawsuit that all 22 of the doctors plead guilty to criminal anti-kickback charges.
Olympus Bribes Doctors for Medical Device Orders
But health care fraud isn’t limited to doctors and labs. Medical device manufacturers are in on the lucrative game, too. Medical device manufacturer Olympus bribed doctors to buy its products and got slapped with a medical lawsuit. Olympus settled to the tune of a $623 million.
Medicare Fraud by Doctors Hurts Taxpayers
Medicare fraud is another favorite target of healthcare greed. Fraudsters may consider it a “victimless crime” to bilk the government out of millions of dollars, but you and everyone you know pays for these crimes since Medicare is funded by taxpayers.
Has your doctor been up to no good? If you’ve been treated by a medical professional who has been associated with bribes, kickbacks, or malpractice, talk to our lawyers. You may be entitled to compensation.