Authorities are also looking into whether a so-far-unnamed pulmonologist unnecessarily intubated a large number of patients and then heavily sedated them throughout the course of their intubation so that a subsequent tracheotomy would become necessary.
Mr. Novak apparently stated tracheotomies are the hospital’s “biggest money maker” and an ICU supervisor allegedly told one of the hospital’s administrators she was supposed to “stretch” the hospitalizations of intubated patients to 28 days “to make Novak happy”. Twenty-eight days is the point at which Sacred Heart’s Medicare reimbursement was maximized—at $160,000 per patient.
I am grateful to The Pathology Blawg for its ongoing attentiveness to physician frauds upon the public.
Of course, if even one major national television network provided the same coverage, it’s likely that these frauds would not be ongoing.
As regards the above story about suspicions of a “large number” of unnecessary tracheotomies, newscasters have even deserted their beloved “if it bleeds, it leads” bias.
Apparently, the very last thing any media mogul wants is for it to be perfectly clear who avails themselves of needed/earned Medicare retirement benefits and who treats themselves – in dastardly and disturbing ways – to unneeded/unearned Medicare preretirement “entitlements.”
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