2 local doctors plead guilty to fraud

Posted 4/17/18

Two Cleveland physisicans have plead guilty in a Caliifornia court to cheating the military health care program out of more than $65 million.

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2 local doctors plead guilty to fraud

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Two Cleveland physicians have pleaded guilty in a California court to cheating the military health care program out of more than $65 million.

Drs. Carl Lindblad and Susan Vergot admitted to writing thousands of prescriptions that were not only expensive and unnecessary, but for patients they had never examined.

The doctors made the guilty pleas for conspiracy to commit health care fraud.

Their actions occurred at Choice MD, the walk-in clinic they operated on Candies Creek Road.

According to the court, the Cleveland doctors worked with a series of co-conspirators to get patient information about U.S. Marines who were enrolled in the military’s TRICARE program. Most of those Marines were based in the San Diego area.

The case of the local doctors is one of many that have come out of the TRICARE program.

San Diego news outlets have been reporting the cost of claims to the program for compounded drugs rose to more than $1 billion, which led investigators to a pharmacy in Utah which had issued prescriptions to patients in Southern California.

Most of those prescriptions were authorized by the two Cleveland doctors, who will be sentenced in June.

The owners of the local clinic, Jimmy and Ashley Collins, have already been indicted on conspiracy charges. That case has yet to go to court.

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