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Bloomingdale doctor pleads guilty to Medicare fraud

Sun-Times file photo

A northwest suburban doctor pleaded guilty in federal court Tuesday to a Medicare fraud scheme that caused losses to the program of at least $4 million.

Dr. Arthur Davida, 62, who was an employee and part-owner of Bloomingdale-based Home Care Physicians Inc., pleaded guilty to the health care fraud charge and faces up to 10 years in prison, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s office.

Davida, of Bloomington, received referrals from home-health agencies in exchange for providing certification that the patients were confined the to the home, prosecutors said. The agencies would then bill Medicare for the specialized nursing care available for in-home treatment.

Between 2010 and August 2013, the doctor provided the certification even though at least 20 percent of the patients were not confined to the home, and Medicare was thus billed for treatment that Davida knew was not medically necessary, prosecutors said.

Davida feared that if he didn’t provide the certifications the home-health agencies would stop sending him referrals, prosecutors said.

Medicare paid the agencies more than $20 million based on orders signed by Davida. Because 20 percent of those patients were not confined to the home, the agency lost at least $4 million, prosecutors said.

Davida was scheduled for sentencing by U.S. District Judge John J. Tharp Jr. on Dec. 16.