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Baltimore doctor agrees to pay $436,000 to U.S. to resolve false claims act allegations

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Posted at 8:18 PM, Apr 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-15 20:18:03-04

BALTIMORE — A Baltimore doctor has agreed to pay $436,000 to the United States to resolve false claims act allegations relating to medically unnecessary procedures.

Officials say Ebenezer Quainoo, M.D., an internist in Baltimore, Maryland, who operates a medical practice known as Baltimore Health Care, P.C., has agreed to pay the funds to settle allegations that he submitted false claims to the United States for medically unnecessary autonomic nervous function tests and trigger point injections with the use of ultrasound guidance.

According to the U.S. Attorney's office, Dr. Quainoo administered peripheral autonomic nervous function tests and he performed trigger point injections using ultrasound guidance.

According to the settlement agreement, from July 24, 2014 to November 30, 2018, Dr. Quainoo submitted claims to Medicare for medically unnecessary autonomic nervous function tests and trigger point injections using ultrasound guidance.

The United States alleged that "autonomic nervous function tests were not medically necessary because Dr. Quainoo lacked the necessary equipment to conduct the tests, the patients did not have an autonomic nervous function disorder before the test was conducted, Dr. Quainoo lacked the specific training to conduct such tests and he only used the tests to monitor patient symptoms, not make any clinical decisions about future patient care."

The U.S. alleged that with the trigger point injections, "these procedures were not medically necessary because Dr. Quainoo failed to document a muscular knot or nodule before the patient underwent the injections, Dr. Quianoo failed to exhaust conservative treatments or therapy before performing the injections, and ultrasound guidance was not needed to perform the injections because the site of the muscle knot should be palpable; otherwise, there is no indication to perform the treatment."

The claims resolved by this settlement are allegations. The settlement is not an admission of liability by Dr. Quainoo, nor a concession by the United States that its claims are not well founded.