BUFFALO – A Dansville physician has agreed to pay more than $600,000 to resolve allegations that during a five-year period he fraudulently billed Medicare and Medicaid, according to the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of New York.
Dr. James A. Sakr, an ear, nose and throat doctor based in Dansville, had billed Medicare and Medicaid between Jan. 1, 2014, and Dec. 31, 2019, for procedures not performed or not documented in patient medical records, according to Assistant U.S. Attorney David M. Coriell, who handled the case.
Sakr has agreed to pay $602,661.61 to resolve the allegations that arose under the False Claims Act, U.S. Attorney Trini E. Ross, said in a news release.
“This health care provider billed for services and procedures that he did not perform and for which he was paid with the public’s money,” Ross said. “The resolution of this case holds Dr. Sakr accountable for his actions and requires him to return the money he should not have received from Medicare and Medicaid.”
The civil settlement includes the resolution of claims brought under the qui tam or whistleblower provisions of the False Claims Act by Dr. Lee M. Mandel. Under those provisions, a private party can file an action on behalf of the United States and receive a portion of any recovery. The qui tam case is captioned United States ex rel. Mandel v. Sakr, 17-cv-907 (W.D.N.Y.) Mandel will receive a share of the settlement.
The resolution of the case was the result of a coordinated effort between the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of New York, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General, and the New York STate Attorney General’s Office Medicaid Fraud Control Unit.