Doctor Who Re-Used Catheters Gets Nearly 8 Years in Prison

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A physician has been sentenced to almost 8 years in jail for performing pointless vein procedures and re-using single-use catheters on sufferers, according to the Department of Justice (DOJ).
In 2019, a federal jury discovered Donald Woo Lee, MD, of Temecula, California, responsible in a $12 million scheme to carry out medically pointless procedures on Medicare beneficiaries and upcode these claims.
The jury additionally discovered him responsible of re-packaging single-use catheters for re-use on sufferers, placing them liable to an infection and different accidents, in keeping with DOJ.
Proof introduced throughout a 5-day trial in 2019 revealed that from 2012 to 2015, Lee recruited Medicare beneficiaries to his clinics and falsely recognized them with venous insufficiency. He offered these sufferers with vein ablation procedures that weren’t wanted, then billed these procedures to Medicare utilizing an inappropriate code to get increased reimbursements, which is also called upcoding.
Lee in the end obtained $4.5 million from the federal insurer, from the $12 million he billed.
He was arrested in 2016, and his sentencing was set for March 2020, nevertheless it was delayed greater than a dozen occasions since then, according to the Mercury News. He had additionally pleaded responsible to 1 depend of submitting false declarations in a chapter continuing, in keeping with DOJ.
Along with his imprisonment, Lee was sentenced to serve 3 years of supervised launch and ordered to pay greater than $4.5 million in restitution to Medicare.
Lee surrendered his medical license in October 2019, in keeping with documents from the Medical Board of California. He had beforehand been positioned on probation for alleged negligence within the care of at the very least two sufferers, and for pre-signing prescriptions for medical assistants to order drugs for sufferers in his absence, amongst different accusations.
He obtained his medical diploma from St. George’s College in Grenada in 1994, after which accomplished an inside drugs residency on the College of California Los Angeles in 1997, in keeping with board information.
Lee made headlines in January after Orange County realtor Terri Litzkow filed a lawsuit alleging that he carried out procedures on her from 2017 to 2021, regardless that he’d misplaced his license in 2019.
The lawsuit expenses that Lee had been employed by Jennifer Armstrong, MD, star of Bravo’s “The Actual Housewives of Orange County,” and that he’d carried out facial thread carry therapies on the realtor regardless that he was unlicensed.
Lee denied working for Armstrong to a Mercury Information reporter, however stated he had skilled her in beauty thread carry procedures in 2019 and early 2020.

Kristina Fiore leads MedPage’s enterprise & investigative reporting crew. She’s been a medical journalist for greater than a decade and her work has been acknowledged by Barlett & Steele, AHCJ, SABEW, and others. Ship story tricks to okay.fiore@medpagetoday.com. Follow



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