Life University Takes Another Hit: Students File Lawsuit
GEORGIA: When it rains it pours. Less than two weeks after losing its chiropractic accreditation, Life University faces 75 current and former students filing suit, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
Filing in Fulton County Superior Court, the plaintiffs seek a jury trial and damages. Students claim emotional and financial suffering because of the university’s neglect in losing accreditation for its largest degree program. Without program accreditation, students will not receive licenses to practice in most states, reports the Journal.
The students asked the judge to grant class-action status, according to the Journal.
New Law Aims to Stamp Out Prostitution Rings in Chiropractic Practices
CALIFORNIA: Because a handful of California chiropractic practices offered more than massage therapy to customers, the industry faces state requirements that change hiring policies for massage therapists.
Under a state Republican directed law, California cities can now require licensing and training for massage therapists who work for chiropractors. Prior to the legislation, unlicensed assistants could work for chiropractors.
Fountain Valley plans to be the first city to enforce the law aimed at stamping out prostitution rings springing up in chiropractic practices, the Los Angeles Times reports. State officials claim the rule will help them dismantle office fronts, behind which unlicensed assistants operate prostitution business under the protection of licensed chiropractors. The state chiropractic board has already confiscated a dozen practice licenses in the last two years, and continues to investigate twenty others.
Chiropractic “Fraud Buster” Named “Investigator of the Year”
ILLINOIS: Lewis D. “Dennie” Huggins, a special agent of the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) received the Investigator of the Year Award from the International Association of Special Investigative Units (IASIU). The award recognizes the positive impact a fraud investigator’s efforts had on their special investigative unit, company, the insurance industry and community, in addition to the unique and exceptional qualities of the investigation.
The West Virginia-based NICB, newly promoted to Area Director, Dennie Huggins, was cited for his outstanding efforts in uncovering a countrywide fraud scam of nearly 700 chiropractic clinics in 35 states involving an estimated $50 million in bogus claims. Huggins uncovered the “Halstead” system, named after Ronald L. Halstead, the chiropractor consultant who developed it. The alleged scam involved chiropractors who were taught to set up multiple corporations that used a medical doctor to allow the chiropractor to bill under the medical doctor’s CPT code, generating greater revenues than if the proper code had been used.
Chiropractor Sentenced to Prison Term for Disguising Services as Medical Rehab
NEW YORK: A suburban New York chiropractor has been sentenced to serve a term of 33 months in prison and pay $2.3 million in criminal forfeiture for his role in a multi-million-dollar scheme to disguise chiropractic services as rehabilitative medical services. The chiropractor, Andrew Orlander of Chappaqua, N.Y., and his corporate entity, Allstate Managed Services, Inc., pleaded guilty March 7 to charges of conspiracy, health care fraud, and mail fraud arising from the operation of medical facilities in Westchester and Rockland counties, north of New York City. In January 2000, Orlander, and his company, together with four other defendants, were charged in a 115-count indictment with converting chiropractic practices into false medical practices, thus allowing Orlander to bill for services at higher rates, conceal his control over the operations, and reap substantial profits.
As part of the scheme, Orlander paid a physician, Mark Greenbaum, to serve as the nominal owner of the facilities for the purposes of meeting regulatory requirements, prosecutors charged. Greenbaum pleaded guilty March 6 and is awaiting sentencing, prosecutors said. The three other defendants in the case also are awaiting sentencing after pleading guilty, prosecutors said, among them, another chiropractor, Alexander Regalbuto.
In investigating the case, undercover agents posing as personal injury attorneys were able to obtain false and misleading letters and reports from the medical facilities for use in litigation against insurance carriers, prosecutors said. In sentencing Orlander, Judge Charles L. Brieant of U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York also gave the Allstate corporate entity two years’ probation, with the condition that it dissolve within six months.
25 Indicted in Global Child Porn Ring
CALIFORNIA: A Clovis chiropractor has been indicted for allegedly being at the heart of an international internet child pornography ring. So far, twenty-five people across the United States and Europe have been charged with conspiring to sexually exploit children. Of those, four were indicted in their home countries of England and Germany, the rest in the United States.
Police began investigating after authorities in Denmark received a tip from a charity about a picture on the internet of a child being molested. Information found on a Danish couple’s computer eventually led to a chiropractor in Clovis.
Police discovered more than 1 million images on 450 CD’s in the DC’s office, many with pictures of the children of his patients, relatives or neighbors. If convicted, the doctor faces up to 35 years in federal prison.
The Fresno Bee & Associated Press TAC