NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) — A New York state orthodontist will pay a $9 million settlement after allowing uncertified employees to perform procedures on patients at a chain of dental offices and then billing Medicaid for the procedures, according to the New York State Attorney General's Office.
Oleg Drut and Diamond Braces allowed staff who were not certified by the New York State's Education Department to do orthodontic procedures at 12 different locations throughout New York and also falsely certified that the employees had the correct certifications on the Medicaid billing in violation of state laws, the Attorney General's Office said.
“It is unacceptable that uncertified individuals would ever perform orthodontic work in New York,” New York State Attorney General Letitia James said in a statement. “Diamond Braces falsely billed Medicaid for these services, cheating our state out of millions of dollars. We will never tolerate these deceptive business practices that break the laws designed to keep patients safe.”
The settlement includes Drut and Diamond Braces using an independent monitor to report compliance to the State of New York in addition to $4.5 million in restitution and $4.5 million in penalties, according to James' office. No patients reported injuries from the work done by the non-certified dental employees, the Attorney General's Office said.