Derailing a medical career: a white collar crime conviction

The following story might be reasonably construed as a near-seamless companion piece to the subject matter we presented in a recent blog post.

That entry — our April 7 post — chronicled a recent large-scale Medicaid fraud case and conviction of a Texas resident. A particular focus of the post was on its underscoring of the vast resources devoted by criminal task forces these days — with zealous prosecutorial zeal being manifestly on display — to identify and convict individuals of white collar crimes in the health care sphere.

Today’s post spotlights one doctor whose promising career was summarily derailed following her conviction on a single count of bribery for making patient referrals to a testing laboratory. She received a monthly payment for doing so.

In a personal recounting of her case recently provided to a national media publication, the doctor does not come across as deceitful or manipulative in any way as she awaits a sentencing outcome that could put her behind bars for a handful of years and saddle her with a $250,000 penalty.

What she merely notes is that she — and many other doctors — are not especially sophisticated or knowledgeable regarding the business aspects of the medical profession. In school, she notes, she was “taught the medicine of medicine,” not the extracurriculars relevant to the business side of the profession.

She says that she was simply unaware that making patient referrals to one exclusive entity could be deemed a crime.

Unquestionably, the medical realm is a highly complicated business, with regulatory and compliance exactions that are perhaps unparalleled in almost all other business areas. It is not hard to see why so many medical professionals find themselves facing challenges from state and federal law enforcers.

Our deep legal team at the Houston law firm of Hilder & Associates, P.C., intimately understands the challenges faced by many individuals facing white collar crime challenges, and we routinely advocate on their behalf with passion and an unwavering focus on promoting their best interests.

We welcome contacts to the firm.