In Boston on Thursday, Massachusetts Dr. Scott Reuben was charged with one count of health care fraud. Reuben used to serve as the chief of acute pain at Baystate Medical Center. Reuben has agreed to plead guilty and pay $420,000 in restitution.
According to federal court records, the Longmeadow physician falsified medical research. He is accused of falsifying findings he presented in at least 21 published studies. For example, the charge against him claims that Reuben actually never tested anyone (he told them he had tested 200 people) when he presented findings to Pfizer about the use of Celebrex in multimodal therapy. The pharmaceutical company had given him a $74,000 research grant.
Reuben faces up to 10-years in prison. However, because of the plea agreement he will likely receive a significantly lighter penalty.
Health Care Fraud
Healthcare fraud is a white collar crime. A person charged with Massachusetts health care fraud is usually a medical professional accused of profiting illegally by submitting allegedly dishonest medical claims. These are serious allegations and our Boston white collar crime law firm has seen cases where someone is wrongly charged with health care fraud because investigators misinterpreted the information and falsely accused someone of a crime.
Allegations against a medical professional charged with health care fraud can include:
• Obtaining unnecessary prescriptions and selling them for profit • Billing for medical services never provided • Filing more than one claim for the same service
• Changing service descriptions, provider names, member names, and dates on claims • Billing for a service that isn’t covered as if it were covered • Changing medical records • Incorrectly reporting a medical procedure or a diagnosis to obtain a larger payment • Using staff members that aren’t licensed • Waiving co-payments • Prescribing treatments that are not necessary
Dr. Scott Reuben, former chief of acute pain at Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, pleads guilty to health-care fraud, Masslive.com, January 14, 2010
Doc accused of healthcare fraud, TopNews, January 16, 2010
Related Web Resources:
Health Care Fraud, Cornell.edu
White Collar Crimes, Justia
These are serious accusations that can land the accused in prison and destroy his/her medical career and reputation. To ensure the best outcome for your Massachusetts white collar crime case, you should speak with an experienced Boston health care fraud lawyer.