Three former employees of medical services provider Pittsburgh Healthworx have been charged operating a wide-ranging medical fraud scheme. According to an announcement by the Pennsylvania attorney general's office, on Friday a state grand jury concluded that there was enough evidence for the men to stand trial.
The men, ages 59, 59, and 65, are accused of illegally prescribing drugs such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, and OxyContin as part of a larger criminal enterprise. Authorities say that the defendants concocted a scheme which involved requiring patients to appear at the business for chiropractic treatments several times per week, and to continue seeing a Pittsburgh Healthworx doctor. This allowed the doctors to write fraudulent prescriptions for victims, who have been described by the attorney general as "drug addicts."
Collectively the accused face numerous charges. Because authorities say that the much of the drugs were purchased with insurance payments, the men face charges of insurance fraud. In fact, authorities say that between 2007 and 2013 Highmark Insurance remitted $2.3 million to Pittsburgh Healthworx. Additionally, the men face charges of criminal conspiracy, prescribing to a drug dependent person, and dealing in proceeds of unlawful activity.
Pittsburgh Healthworx has also been charged with two counts of corrupt organizations and one count of dealing in proceeds of unlawful activity.
For their part the men maintain their innocence, and have signaled that they believe that the facts of the case are on their side.
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