Oncologist Farid Fata has prescribed thousands of unnecessary, physically taxing drug dosages to his patients. The mishap was detected as an oncology expert reviewed medical records for 100 former patients.
Harvard Medical School professor of hematologic oncology David Steensma counted 2,770 medically unnecessary chemotherapy drug dosages prescribed to patients who had, or were misdiagnosed with myelodysplastic syndromes, multiple myeloma and acute myelogenous leukemia.
Steensma said, "There were abnormal drug combinations, strange dosage levels, extraordinarily extended chemotherapy periods and outpatient treatments for people who should have been watched closely as inpatients."
Fata was pleaded guilty in September 2014 to 13 counts of health care fraud, two money-laundering counts and one count of conspiracy to pay or receive kickbacks.
Steensma also found a total of 3,556 questionable dosages of intense drugs used during chemotherapy to prevent infections and treat nausea, anemia, diarrhea, immunoglobulin deficiency, iron deficiency and iron toxicity.
The government has also asked Paul Borman, U.S. District Judge in Detroit, to order the doctor to pay back $17.6 million paid by Medicare and Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Michigan for fraudulent treatments. The figure doesn't include patient co-pays or coinsurance contributions, according to court documents.