GREENSBORO, N.C. – HEAG Pain Management Center, P.A. (HEAG) and its owner, Dr. Kwadwo Gyarteng-Dakwa (Dr. Dakwa), have agreed to pay $500,000.00 to resolve allegations that HEAG and Dr. Dakwa violated the False Claims Act by billing Medicare and Medicaid for medically unnecessary diagnostic testing between January 1, 2011 and October 31, 2016, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Sandra J. Hairston. HEAG and Dr. Dakwa will also enter into an Integrity Agreement with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General.
The United States alleged that HEAG and Dr. Dakwa knowingly submitted or caused the submission of false claims to Medicare and Medicaid for diagnostic nerve conduction studies. Diagnostic tests must be ordered for a patient to treat a specific illness or injury and must be individualized to the patient’s need. The government alleged that HEAG performed the nerve conduction studies without regard to medical necessity, as these tests were performed prior to any examination by Dr. Dakwa and therefore not tailored to the treatment of the individual patient. In addition, unqualified staff at HEAG frequently performed the nerve conduction studies, despite coverage rules requiring a physician to perform the tests.
“Dr. Dakwa devised a scheme to increase his profits rather than make medical decisions based on individual patient need,” said Acting United States Attorney Sandra Hairston. “We will not tolerate and will continue to search for any fraud that allows individual practitioners to wrongfully profit off taxpayer-funded health care programs.”
The resolutions obtained in this matter were the result of a coordinated effort between the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of North Carolina, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Counsel to the Inspector General, and the North Carolina Department of Justice, Medicaid Investigations Division. Assistant U.S. Attorney Rebecca Mayer represented the United States.
The claims resolved by the settlement are allegations only and there has been no determination of liability.