“Overbilling and charging for phantom treatments are picking the pockets of taxpayers and assaulting government health program integrity.” (Gerald Roy, Special Agent, Office of Inspector General, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
In the state of California still another in an astonishingly long line of criminal physicians has been convicted of stealing from insurance companies.
Doctor Neil Van Dyck, a podiatrist, confessed in court last week to the theft of over $1,000,000 in health care fraud after submitting falsified medical billings for nearly $3,000,000.
According to court documents Van Dyck, age 64, owned a business called Placer Podiatry in the city of Roseville. Investigators learned that over a 5-year time span that began in 2009, Van Dyck sent fraudulent medical claims worth at least $2,800,000 to numerous insurance providers, including TriCare, Medicare, Medi-Cal, and others. TriCare is the U.S. government program that manages health insurance for military personnel and their families.
Investigations, conducted jointly by the FBI and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, determined that the wayward MD would routinely claim that he was performing more extensive treatments than were truthfully done. In many cases the procedures were carried out by staff members who were not legally qualified. In numerous other instances, the doctor reported he had treated patients when he was not even in the clinic.
The case of the fraudulent foot fiend came to light when a Medicare investigator requested medical records on a single bill for a procedure that was supposedly done in the summer of 2011. The bill illegally reported that the doctor had performed a toenail removal, when nothing of the sort had been done. Detectives guessed there was trouble afoot.
According to the Placer Podiatry website Van Dyck specialized in wound care at Sutter Roseville Medical Center. He also worked for the California Workers’ Compensation system.
Van Dyck is due in court for sentencing in January. He could get a 10-year prison term.
Here’s another look: