Massachusetts surgeon to pay $150K to resolve false billing allegations

A Massachusetts surgeon will pay $150,000 to resolve allegations of falsely billing the state's Medicaid program, Attorney General Maura Healey announced.

Ms. Healey's office alleged that Ingolf Tuerk, MD, a physician who practiced urology at St. Elizabeth's Hospital in Brighton, Mass., caused false billing of more than $31,000 to MassHealth for portions of surgical procedures that did not take place and office visits that he did not attend or supervise.

The attorney general's office said Dr. Tuerk instructed his residents and fellows to document that ultrasound probes were used during kidney removal surgeries, even when they weren't. The office also alleged that when the surgeon billed the state's Medicaid program for office visits, he indicated he was present or supervising other medical professionals, even though patients were seen only by an unsupervised resident or fellow.

Dr. Tuerk has agreed to pay $150,000 as part of the settlement. He also is required to implement a multiyear compliance program with his own money if he remains a practicing physician in Massachusetts after this year, Ms. Healey's office said.

 

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