By Kelly Patricia O’Meara June 26, 2015 The financial and physical cost of healthcare fraud is staggering and psychiatrists are over-represented in the commission of…
A top executive and three aides who prosecutors say operated a Hollywood psychiatric hospital like a “brothel of fraud” were found guilty Friday of bilking Medicare by submitting false claims for $67 million.
“On Tuesday and Wednesday, federal agents fanned out across three South Florida counties, arresting a total of 42 Medicare fraud offenders. Three others charged are believed to be in Florida. The sweep came almost one year after the indictment of Miami-based American Therapeutic Corp., with seven regional clinics. A total of 24 defendants, including senior executives, psychiatrists and counselors, were charged, netting several guilty pleas and one trial conviction. That case alone accounted for $200 million in fraudulent Medicare claims during the past decade. The agency paid out $83 million.”
There’s a reason psychiatrists prescribe drugs rather than talking therapy: the latter makes no money for pharmaceutical firms. The New York Times recently led with a front-page splash about psychiatry’s propensity to prescribe pills, “Talk Doesn’t Pay, So Psychiatry Turns Instead to Drug Therapy”. That news is already widely known in the mental health field, but it has vast ramifications for Americans trying to maintain their sanity in our market-driven and medical system for delivering mental healthcare. What does the turn to drug therapy mean for the mass of Americans?
Pharmaceutical manufacturer AstraZeneca, based in Wilmington, Del., has agreed to pay $520 million to settle allegations that it had illegally marketed its antipsychotic drug Seroquel, according to an AZ Central news report.