Under the category of "You've Got to Be Kidding Me" comes Dr. Farid Fata.
The feds claim that the 48-year-old oncologist from Oakland Township submitted false claims to Medicare for services that were medically unnecessary, including chemotherapy treatments for patients. He was arrested Tuesday.
“Dr. Fata allegedly perpetrated a brazen and dangerous fraud that time and again jeopardized his patients’ wellbeing,” Acting Assistant Attorney General Mythili Raman said in a statement. “The conduct alleged today is chilling, with the defendant endangering patient safety through misdiagnoses, over- or mis-prescription of chemotherapy and other treatments, and delay of hospital care for patients with serious injuries."
Authorities say that Dr. Fata owns and operates Michigan Hematology Oncology Centers (MHO), which has offices in Clarkston, Bloomfield Hills, Lapeer, Sterling Heights, Troy and Oak Park.
Authorities allege that Dr. Fata allegedly submitted fraudulent claims to Medicare for medically unnecessary services, including chemotherapy treatments, Positron Emission Tomograph (PET) scans and a variety of cancer and hematology treatments for patients who did not need them.
As part of the scheme, he allegedly falsified and directed others to falsify documents to justify cancer treatments for billing purposes. MHO billed Medicare for approximately $35 million dollars over a two-year period, approximately $25 million of which is attributable to Dr. Fata.
The complaint further alleges that Dr. Fata administered unnecessary chemotherapy to patients in remission; gave deliberate misdiagnoses of patients as having cancer to justify unnecessary cancer treatment; administered chemotherapy to end-of-life patients who would not have benefited from the treatment; deliberately misdiagnosed patients without cancer to justify expensive testing; fabricated other diagnoses such as anemia and fatigue to justify unnecessary hematology treatments, and distributed controlled substances to patients without medical necessity or administered dangerous levels."
Detroit U.S. Attorney Barbara McQuade said in a statement: “The agents and attorneys acted with great attention to detail to stop these allegedly dangerous practices as quickly as possible, and we have set up a victim hotline so that patients can access their files and get questions answered.”