Judgment against pharmacists for drug fraud



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Two years probation for fraudulent pharmacists

The district court of Lübeck sentenced a pharmacist to two years' suspended sentence because between 2004 and 2008 he reduced the price for medication intended exclusively for clinical use and subsequently sold it to old people's homes, prisons, medical practices and pharmaceutical wholesalers at regular prices.

For years, the 67-year-old pharmacist had generated substantial additional income from the resale of the discounted medicines. Now the confessed pharmacist received the receipt for his misconduct. Because of the improper use of the hospital goods and commercial fraud in 446 cases, the Lübeck Regional Court sentenced the accused to two years' suspended sentence. Any financial damage that may have arisen can now be asserted by those affected in a separate civil procedure.

Pharmacist confesses sale of illegal hospital goods After the 67-year-old pharmacist had given a confession in the morning, in which he confirmed that between 2004 and 2008 he bought cytostatics directly from manufacturers for hospital supplies through his hospital-supplying pharmacy and then resold them at normal prices, condemned this District Court Lübeck the suspect for two years on probation. According to information from the Baden-Württemberg State Criminal Police Office, the Lübeck public prosecutor ordered a search of the pharmacy business premises in the St. Lorenz Nord district of Lübeck in November 2008. At the same time, a clinic, a wholesaler, a health insurance fund and apartments in other cities were also searched, media reports from the police action. In 2010, the public prosecutor filed a lawsuit against the pharmacy owner. But this was not the sole responsible and so there are further proceedings against an employee of the pharmacy as well as two employees of the AOK Schleswig-Holstein (now AOK Northwest) and the managing director of a pharmaceutical wholesaler. The employees of the health insurance company are said to have agreed unjustified discounts with the pharmacist and to have provided the outpatient doctors with the illegal hospital goods. In return, the billing costs, for example for cytostatic prescriptions or weekly blisters, were reduced in favor of the health insurance fund, according to the public prosecutor.

Billions of dollars damage caused by billing fraud Again and again, individual doctors and pharmacists stand out due to fraudulent activities that enrich them at the expense of the healthcare system. Often, the clarification is only possible by accident and experts suspect a significant number of unreported cases. In addition, there are the accidental billing errors, so that the health insurance companies claim to suffer millions of dollars annually in the billing of pharmaceuticals and medical services. Successful searches, as in the case of the Lübeck pharmacist, are also an important signal in the sense of a functioning health system. (fp)

Also read:
Millions in HIV drug fraud
Healthcare corruption and fraud
Doctor cheats health insurance companies with prescriptions

Image: Siepmann H., Pixelio.de.

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