Connecticut AG warns of fraudulent board certifications

Keith Loria Apr. 8, 2009, 5:36pm

Richard Blumenthal (D)

HARTFORD, Conn. (Legal Newsline) -Connecticut doctors and consumers are being warned that bogus medical board certifications are being discovered around the state.

Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal is investigating the scam, after receiving a complaint from the American Board of Internal Medicine.

Although board certification is not required to practice medicine, certification measures expertise and quality in medical knowledge and is essential in recognizing a specialist, including admitting privileges at many hospitals, and assignment as a primary care physician for referrals by many insurance carriers.

"Real and recognized medical board certifications require rigorous examination and education-not simply payment for a piece of paper," Blumenthal said. "This scheme deceives patients and medical professionals, and endangers lives-misleading consumers into believing that their physicians possess a level of expertise that they lack."

Blumenthal's office has discovered that an out-of-state individual known as Keith Alan Lasko -- who also uses the names K. Lasko, Keith Ferrari, K. Ferrari, and KA James Windsor -- has sold phony certifications to doctors in a variety of medical specialties in exchange for submitting only basic information and a substantial fee.

"This alleged con artist used false names-for himself and for fictitious medical boards whose fake certificates he sold. Doctors face potential legal action if they misrepresent their credentials with phony certificates. These specialty-seeking doctors who paid substantial sums -- $500 or higher -- were typically foreign-born or foreign-educated, and now should know better," the Democrat said. "The scheme demeaned and degraded the good names and reputations of legitimate boards like the American Board of Internal Medicine, whom we thank for alerting us."

Blumenthal further said consumers should always research and seek references in selecting a physician.

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