I believe much of the problem with escalating medical costs and Medicare abuse falls on the physician’s greed and self-justification of his actions

A physician who has a practice in the District of Columbia has been charged with participation in an alleged $12.7 million healthcare fraud scheme that involved submitting false claims to Medicare for complicated procedures that were never performed, according to a Department of Justice (DOJ) news release.

In an indictment filed July 30 in the District of Columbia, physiatrist Frederick Gooding, MD, aged 68, of Wilmington, Delaware, was charged with 11 counts of healthcare fraud. He was arrested on August 1.

According to the indictment, from January 2015 to August 2018, Gooding participated in a healthcare fraud scheme in which he submitted Medicare claims for injections and aspirations that were not medically necessary, not provided, or both.

Gooding allegedly knew that the injections were not provided. To disguise his scheme, he allegedly falsified medical documents to make it appear as if the purported medical services billed to Medicare were medically necessary.

Gooding submitted or caused the submission of more than $12.7 million in claims to Medicare, the indictment alleges.

In 2010, the Delaware Medical Board suspended Gooding’s medical license for 6 months after one of his patients died after receiving an injection to treat pain, Becker’s ASC Review reported. He was also barred from administering cervical block injections, the article stated.

The indictment of Gooding resulted from an investigation led by the Medicare Fraud Strike Force, which is a joint initiative of the DOJ and the Department of Health and Human Services. Since it was formed in 2007, the Medicare Fraud Strike Force has charged nearly 4000 persons who collectively billed the Medicare program for more than $14 billion, the DOJ press release stated.