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Psychiatrist Sentenced to Prison for Healthcare Fraud Scheme – Norfolk, VA

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Thursday, January 16, 2020

Source: US Department of Justice
NORFOLK, Va. – A Virginia Beach doctor was sentenced today to 27 months in prison for defrauding Medicare, Medicaid, and Tricare, and other health care benefits programs out of hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Additionally, Udaya K. Shetty, 64, agreed to pay over $1 million to settle related civil claims.

According to court documents, was a licensed psychiatrist practicing medicine at his own practice, Behavioral & Neuropsychiatric Group. Beginning in 2013, Shetty created a scheme by which he could overbill healthcare benefit programs by seeing patients for only five to 10 minutes, but then billing for services that were on average 41 to 63 minutes long. Shetty instructed his staff to often double, triple, or even quadruple book appointment times. The fraud became apparent when investigators discovered that on dozens of instances Shetty would need more than 24 hours a day of working to perform the services for which he billed. 

In 2017, Shetty closed his own practice and joined another psychiatric practice, Quietly Radiant Psychiatric Services. While there Shetty, and one of his former employees, Mary Otto, engaged in a similar scheme. Although other Quietly Radiant staff members were responsible for billing, Shetty directed Otto to access the billing system and change all of his billing data to a higher billing rate.  Otto complied and changed the data without the knowledge of Quietly Radiant’s staff. As a result of their actions, Shetty and Otto defrauded various healthcare benefit programs of more than $450,000. Otto pled guilty for her role in the scheme and was sentenced to 15 months in prison on January 10.

In regards to the civil settlement, Shetty agreed to pay $1,078,000 to the United States and the Commonwealth of Virginia to resolve his liability under the False Claims Act and the Virginia Fraud Against Taxpayers Act for submitting or causing the submission of false claims to the Medicare, Medicaid, and TRICARE programs.

G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Martin Culbreth, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Norfolk Field Office; Robert E. Craig, Special Agent in Charge for the Defense Criminal Investigative Service’s (DCIS) Mid-Atlantic Field Office; Maureen R. Dixon, Special Agent in Charge of the Office of Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS); and Mark R. Herring, Attorney General of Virginia, made the announcement after sentencing by U.S. District Judge Rebecca Beach Smith. Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph L. Kosky prosecuted the criminal case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Clare P. Wuerker handled the civil case.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 2:19-cr-089.

Some patients often start off with private health care and end up with Medicaid, Medicare or Tricare because these government health insurance or more advantageous for those medical ‘professionals’ seeking to defraud patients and insurance providers. Would you recognize health care fraud if you see it? What does it look like? Have you been a victim of health care fraud?

Share your comments with the community by posting them below. Share the wealth of health with your friends and family by sharing this article with 3 people today. As always you are the best part of what we do. Keep sharing!

If these articles have been helpful to you and yours, give a donation to Shidonna Raven Garden and Cook Ezine today.

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Electric Cars: Tesla in Norfolk

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A Tesla is a beautiful car (piece of machinery) made by a true engineer at heart. So, when you see a Tesla it is pretty hard to miss. And when you see a Tesla electric charging station it is even harder to miss. They are definitely unique structures that stand out. We have one right in Norfolk at the Janaf Shopping Center not far from the Walmart. Norfolk, VA, USA may have its climate change challenges, but it is also a dynamic and progressive city with several positive climate change initiatives that we will be talking about. We are super excited to be living in the city that we believe is a jewel among many jewels in the state of Virginia.

We are still driving vehicles that are not electric. But, we have been doing out homework. It is reported that most electric cars costs comparably more in the beginning. But, over time we hear that the savings in maintenance and to power (electric vs. gas) yields a savings that adds up over time. Additionally, FuelEconomy.gov reports that there are also possible tax breaks for having a electric vehicle. We will continue doing our research and hope that our next vehicle can be electric. As the technology grows there continues to be more options for consumers new and used.

Do you own an electric vehicle? How long have you had it? Do you plan on buying an electric vehicles? What other benefits have you identified? What adjustments did you have to make when you purchased your first electric vehicle?

Share your comments with the community by posting them below. Share the wealth of health with your friends and family by sharing this article with 3 people today. As always you are the best part of what we do. Keep sharing!

If these articles have been helpful to you and yours, give a donation to Shidonna Raven Garden and Cook Ezine today.

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Norfolk, Virginia and Climate Change

Climate Change in Virginia
Source: Inside Climate News
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In 2017 Donald Trump left the Paris Agreement. What is the Paris Agreement: The Paris Agreement is an agreement within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, dealing with greenhouse-gas-emissions mitigation, adaptation, and finance, signed in 2016. This summer is a prime example of the effects of climate change. Norfolk, VA, USA has been experiencing record days of heat this summer. California continues to struggle with drought and wild fires. What significant changes have you experienced (over a significant amount of time or other wise / decade or more)? How has your health been effected by climate change? Do you live in Norfolk, VA, USA? How have you adjusted to the significant increase in heat this summer? Norfolk, VA, USA has already seen days as hot as 102 degrees Fahrenheit. What if it got even hotter than 102 degrees Fahrenheit in Norfolk, VA, USA? Share your comments with the community by posting them below. Share the wealth of health with your friends and family by sharing this article with 3 people today. As always you are the best part of what we do. Keep sharing!

If these articles have been helpful to you and yours, give a donation to Shidonna Raven Garden and Cook Ezine today.

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COVID Wise App

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On Wednesday, August 5, 2020 Governor Ralph Northam announced the COVID Wise App, which can be found in Play Store and should also be found in Apple Store. Northam clearly stated that the app does not collect your data but you can voluntarily submit your data, we believe anonymously via the app. The purpose of the app is to inform you if you have been in proximity to someone who is COVID 19 positive. As governors across the US grapple with mixed messaging from our nations capital, they have been seeking solutions to combat what some have called a biological war. This is Virginia’s tool to combat the war on COVID 19. We encourage you to learn more about the app and to share your experience with the community.

Indeed the whole world is all in this together. Let us pull together. This app may not be available in your state however a comparable app maybe available. Contact your local authorities to discover what they are doing to prevent the spread of COVID 19. Authorities are also encouraging people to get tested for COVID 19. In Norfolk, VA, USA you can click this link to learn more about free COVID 19 testing. During these times we wish you and yours the best of health. There are other preventative measures one can take. Some doctors have reccomended taking vitamins and herbs (such as echniaeca as we learned here at Shidonna Raven Garden and Cook) that can build the immune system to increase one’s body ability to fight off disease.

Many healthy people have contracted this disease. There is still much to learn about this disease. We hope these resources are helpful to you and arm you, your friends, family and colleagues during these times. Remember to share your experience with COVID wise with the community here. How has this article helped you and yours? How has COVID 19 impacted your and yours? How have you and yours responded to COVID 19? Share the wealth of health with your friends and family by sharing this article with 3 people today. As always you are the best part of what we do. Keep sharing!

If these articles have been helpful to you and yours, give a donation to Shidonna Raven Garden and Cook Ezine today.

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Free COVID 19 Testing

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With everyone we know being impacted by COVID 19, we wanted to share some information about free and local testing (Norfolk, VA, USA). We encourage you to locate a (free) testing location if you are not located in Norfolk, VA. Some congressman are stating that testing was a missed opportunity when reopening. As we reopen some of us are faced with work environments that may unintentionally expose us to COVID 19. Indeed we are all susceptible leaving many of us questioning if we have COVID 19? What do we do if we do have COVID 19? These are definitely scary times and we understand because we truly are all in this together. We encourage everyone to make informed decisions and to inform those around you if you are indeed positive for COVID 19. Many people have survived and we hope that time will be on your side should you or a loved one have to face overcoming this virus. We wish everyone great health. Remember healthy is the New Normal. As we know the communities impacted the most were those with preexisting conditions. How has COVID 19 impact you and your family? How have things changed for you since COVID 19? How have you cooped with the pandemic? Share your comments below. Thank you to the City of Norfolk for providing this resource and to those who have shared it. Share the Wealth of Health with your friends and family by sharing this article with 3 people today. As always you are the best part of what we do. Stay healthy!

If these articles have been helpful to you and yours, give a donation to Shidonna Raven Garden and Cook Ezine today.

https://www.norfolk.gov/covid19testing