BAY CITY, MI – A vascular surgeon from Bay City pleaded guilty today to participating in a scheme to defraud Medicare, Medicaid, and Blue Cross/Blue Shield out of approximately $19.5 million.
Pleading guilty was Dr. Vasso Godiali, 59-years-old.
According to the plea agreement, Vasso Godiali began knowingly defrauding the three medical insurers in approximately 2009 and did so by causing the submission of false billing to all three insurers. As evidenced in the plea agreement, Godiali’s false and fraudulent billing includes admissions related to claims for the placement of stents in dialysis patients and for the treatment of arterial blood clots.
Godiali admitted that he billed for the placement of multiple stents in the same vessel, and prepared medical records purporting to document the medical necessity justifying that billing. In fact, Godiali did not place those stents, and he admitted to billing the insurers for services never rendered while preparing materially inaccurate medical records to justify the fraudulent billing. With respect to arterial blood clots, the plea agreement documents a similar pattern of misconduct. Godiali acknowledged that his medical records would describe encountering occluded arteries that would appear to justify the performance of arterial thrombectomies. In fact, as Godiali admitted that he often encountered no such occlusions, performed no such thrombectomies, and thus billed insurers for services never rendered while preparing false medical records to justify the fraudulent claims.