Michigan physician convicted in $6.3M Medicare fraud scheme

A physician from Bloomfield Hills, Mich., was convicted of healthcare fraud and making false statements in what federal officials say was a $6.3 million Medicare fraud scheme.

Sophie Toya, MD, signed thousands of prescriptions for orthotic braces for more than 2,500 Medicare patients over the course of six months, according to a May 10 news release from the Justice Department. Dr. Toya was not the treating physician for these patients. She was connected with some of the patients over the telephone through a telemarketing scheme. For some patients, Dr. Toya signed prescriptions without having any contact with them, according to the Justice Department.

Dr. Toya also prescribed several braces for undercover agents posing as Medicare patients after speaking to each on the phone for less than a minute, according to the Justice Department press release. 

Dr. Toya's false prescriptions were used by brace supply companies to bill Medicare more than $6.3 million. She was paid about $120,000 in exchange for signing the fraudulent prescriptions, officials said.

Dr. Toya was convicted of one count of healthcare fraud and five counts of false statements relating to healthcare matters.

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