Jury convicts psychiartist in $158 million Medicare Fraud scheme

Texas psychiatrist Sharon Iglehart, 58, was convicted by a federal jury of participating in a $158 million Medicare fraud scheme involving false claims for mental health treatment, after a seven-day trial. According to evidence, Iglehart engaged in a scheme to defraud Medicare by submitting, through Riverside General Hospital, $158 million in false and fraudulent claims for partial hospitalization program (PHP) services to Medicare. A PHP is a form of intensive outpatient treatment for severe mental illness. The evidence showed that the Medicare beneficiaries did not receive PHP services and in fact most of the Medicare beneficiaries for whom Riverside billed Medicare rarely saw a psychiatrist and did not receive intensive psychiatric treatment.

In addition, Iglehart personally billed Medicare for individual psychotherapy and other treatment to patients at Riverside locations that she never provided. The evidence at trial also demonstrated that Iglehart falsified the medical records of patients at Riverside’s inpatient facility to make it appear as if she provided psychiatric treatment when, in fact, she did not.

Jeffrey Newman represents whistleblowers but not in this case.