WHAT YOUR DOCTOR WON’T (OR CAN’T) TELL YOU: Busted – Doctors Accepting Bribes EVAN S. LEVINE, M.D.

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LEVINE_Dr. Evan SYONKERS, NY — April 10, 2013 — A
few months ago a new patient came to see me. He had read my book , “What Your
Doctor Won’t (or Can’t) Tell You
” a few years ago and came with a huge folder
of bills for blood tests at a lab called Biodiagnostic Laboratory Services. He
is a healthy man who believed that his medical doctor had ordered an unusual
amount of blood tests on him and that his insurance company paid thousands of
dollars for many unnecessary lab tests.

Below
are the actual labs tests ordered on this patient:

Thyroid Profile


T4


Free Thyroxine

TSH

T3 Uptake


T3, Total


Free T3


FT4 Index


Thyroid Peroxidase AB


Thyroglobulin Antibodies


Thyroglobulin


Diabetic Profile


Glucose


Glycohemoglobin


Insulin


C-peptide


Hepatitis Profile


Hepatitis A Total


Hepatitis A IGM


Hepatitis B Surface AG

Hepatitis B Surface AB

Hepatitis
B Core AB


Hepatitis
B Core AB IGM


Hepatitis
C AB


Comprehensive
Metabolic


Endocrinology


FSH


LH


DHEA-Sulfate


Prolactin


Progesterone


Estradiol


Testosterone


Beta
2 Microglobulin


Free
Testosterone


Estriol
Serum Total


Sex
Hormone Binding


Globulin


Hematology
Sedimentation
Rate


Serology
Anti-Streptolysin

C-Reactive
Protein


RPR


ANA
Screen


Anti
DNA


Herpes
Simplex Type 1


Herpes
Simplex Type 2


Rheumatoid
Factor


Cyclic
Citrulline IGG


Compliment
C3


Compliment
C4


Tumor
Markers


CA
123


CEA


AFP
tumor marker


PSA


Free
PSA


%
Free PSA


CA
19-9


HIV-1
AB


HIV-2
AB


Allergy
tests

I
told him that I would have ordered only the following bloods that would likely
be billed for less than $200 dollars:

  • Chemistry
  • Blood count – I did not notice
    if that was ordered
  • Thyroid lab that would have only
    included a T4 and TSH for screening
  • Lipid profile – I did not see
    that test ordered.

Yesterday, April 9, 2013, according to a
statement released by the office of the New Jersey U.S. Attorney, “Federal
agents arrested the president and part-owner of Parsippany, N.J.-based
Biodiagnostic Laboratory Services LLC (BLS), a New Jersey physician and two
other BLS employees yesterday morning on charges they participated in a long-running
scheme to bribe doctors to refer patient blood samples to BLS and to order
unnecessary tests, resulting in tens of millions of dollars in profit for the
company. The charges were announced today by New Jersey U.S. Attorney Paul J.
Fishman
.”

My sources suggested that
doctors were being paid around $5,000 a month to use BLS and order a programmed
minimum amount of tests, specifically costly studies like allergy tests and
hormone studies. But it seems my sources were wrong , and underestimated the
amount of bribes being paid.

In that same statement a “
Frank Santangelo, 43, of Boonton, N.J., a New Jersey physician with offices in
Montville and Wayne, is charged in the Complaint for allegedly accepting bribes
to refer patients to BLS and violating his duty of fidelity to his patients.
Santangelo allegedly received more than $700,000 in bribe payments from BLS and
sent the company more than $4.2 million in blood referrals.”

While the agents have arrested the owners of this company
and a physician they have yet to investigate, perhaps there are hundreds of other
physicians who took cash from BLS workers, like the physician for this
patient, and in return ordered millions of dollars of unnecessary tests. I
suspect that this is just the beginning of one of the largest medical insurance
investigations in both New Jersey and New York and I am hoping that these
duplicitous MDs are not sleeping well tonight.

Dr. Evan S. Levine is a cardiologist in New York and a
Clinical Assistant Professor of
Medicine
at Montefiore Medical
Center

Albert Einstein
College of Medicine
, and affiliated
with St. Joseph's Medical Center in Yonkers. He is also the author of the book “What Your Doctor
Won’t (or Can’t) Tell You
”. He lives in Connecticut with his wife and children. 

eHeziWHAT YOUR DOCTOR WON’T (OR CAN’T) TELL YOU: Busted – Doctors Accepting Bribes EVAN S. LEVINE, M.D.

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