A federal judge sentenced a Texas physician to a maximum five years in prison without parole and ordered the family practitioner to pay $1.39 million in restitution following conviction on a charge of conspiring to commit healthcare fraud.
U. S. Attorney Michael Shelby announced Monday that Clemis Laraine Jackson, M.D., was sentenced to the maximum statutory penalty for conspiring to commit healthcare fraud.
Jackson, another physician, and seven nonphysicians were named in a March 2002 grand jury indictment alleging kickbacks, fraud and money laundering involving six Houston-area physical therapy clinics.
Jackson was convicted last December following a four-week jury trial. The jury deliberated more than two days before finding Jackson and a co-defendant clinic operator guilty but acquitting the other physician charged in the case. Six of the defendants had pleaded guilty earlier, and several testified at Jackson's trial.
As medical director of the Quality Medi-Care Clinic and the Northside Rehab Clinic, Jackson was responsible for conducting evaluations and re-evaluations of patients to determine whether the patients qualified for physical therapy, according to the government. Jackson also was responsible for supervising all of the physical therapy treatments provided by the physical therapy technicians, some of whom testified at trial they were unlicensed and had little or no training or experience.
Much of their work was performed in the homes of patients and was not directly supervised by Jackson, sometimes before Jackson had performed a medical examination to determine whether treatment was warranted or even if the patients qualified under Medicare or Medicaid guidelines, the government said.