Monday, June 29, 2009

“Alternative Medicine” Clinic Operator Sentenced to Federal Prison for Health Care Fraud Chaunsay Beckwith Defrauded Insurance Companies and Medicare

“Alternative Medicine” Clinic Operator Sentenced to Federal Prison for Health Care Fraud
Chaunsay Beckwith Defrauded Insurance Companies and Medicare in Hyperbaric Therapy Scheme


CHAUNSAY BECKWITH, 46, of Tucker, Georgia, was sentenced today by Senior United States District Judge Marvin H. Shoob to serve nearly 5 years in federal prison on a charge of health care fraud.

United States Attorney David E. Nahmias said of the case, “Hyperbaric chambers have a number of legitimate medical uses, as varied as helping burn victims and scuba divers in their recovery. This defendant turned a hyperbaric chamber into a scheme for generating over a million dollars in fraudulent claims. Health care fraud raises the costs of health care for everyone, and those responsible for such fraud may end up prison like this defendant.”

BECKWITH was sentenced to 4 years, 8 months in prison to be followed by 3 years of supervised release, ordered to pay $1,035,144 in restitution, and perform 50 hours of community service. BECKWITH pleaded guilty to the charge on April 7, 2009.

According to United States Attorney Nahmias and other information presented in court: Between 2003 and 2007, BECKWITH, an owner/operator who does not hold any type of medical license, provided hyperbaric oxygen therapy to numerous patients in her clinic, International Alternative Medicine, Inc., located at 4450 Hugh Howell Road, in Tucker, Georgia. None of the patients were diagnosed with medical conditions that made them eligible to receive payments from health care benefit programs. BECKWITH submitted $1,577,827 in claims to insurance companies and Medicare, which included false diagnosis codes that enabled her to fraudulently receive $1,035,144 in payments for the hyperbaric chamber treatments.

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