10 physicians, healthcare CEO to pay $1.68M to settle kickback claims

Ten Texas physicians and a healthcare executive who operates a group of medical practices in Florida agreed to pay a total of $1.68 million to settle kickback allegations, according to a March 22 Justice Department news release.

According to prosecutors, the Texas physicians received thousands of dollars in pay from eight different management service organizations in exchange for ordering laboratory tests from Little River Healthcare, True Health Diagnostics and/or Boston Heart Diagnostics Corp. 

Here are the physicians who reached monetary settlements: 

  • Tamar Brionez, MD, agreed to pay $85,006
  • Gary Goff, MD, and his affiliated practices agreed to pay $454,088
  • John Hierholzer, MD, agreed to pay $24,850
  • Bruce Maniet, DO, agreed to pay $175,43
  • Huy Chi Nguyen, MD, agreed to pay $211,821
  • Dung Chi Nguyen, MD, agreed to pay $211,721
  • Rakesh Patel, DO, agreed to pay $174,539
  • Cuong Trinh, MD, agreed to pay $45,056
  • Randall Walker, MD, agreed to pay $60,898
  • Michael Whiteley, DO, agreed to pay $52,015 

As part of the settlements, the 10 physicians agreed to cooperate in the investigations against other parties involved in the alleged scheme.  

In addition to the physicians, Brett Markowitz, the founder and CEO of Florida Rejuvenation Holdings, which operates medical practices in Tampa, paid $185,000 to resolve allegations of accepting kickbacks from True Health. Prosecutors said True Health paid for each patient that physicians at the medical practices referred for clinical laboratory services. 

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