Florida physician pleads guilty to submitting $20M in fraudulent claims

A physician in Florida has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit healthcare fraud and faces a maximum of 10 years in federal prison, the Department of Justice announced Sept. 18. 

Richard Davidson, MD, admitted that he and his conspirators established a conglomerate of durable medical equipment companies that they used to submit illegal claims to Medicare. Dr. Davidson said they placed the companies in the names of straw owners, which enabled them to submit high volumes of illegal durable medical equipment claims to Medicare, according to the Justice Department. 

Dr. Davidson and his conspirators also illegally purchased thousands of signed physicians' orders for durable medical equipment from individuals who bribed physicians for the orders, according to the Justice Department. 

Dr. Davidson and his conspirators submitted more than $20 million in illegal claims in one year, resulting in more than $10 million in payments from Medicare and the Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Dr. Davidson was ordered to forfeit $2.5 million to the federal government. His sentencing hearing has not been set. 

More articles on legal and regulatory issues:
West Virginia hospital settles whistleblower suit for $50M
Chicago hospital defeats allegations of 'ghost payroll' scheme
Scripps Research Institute settles allegations of improper NIH charges for $10M

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