Ringleader of Opioid Scheme Gets 16.5 Years


Dr. Francisco Patino has been sentenced to 16.5 years in prison for his role in a health care fraud scheme that resulted in over $250 million in false and fraudulent claims being submitted to Medicare, Medicaid, and other health insurance programs, exploited patients suffering from addiction by administering unnecessary injections, illegally distributed over 6.6 million doses of medically unnecessary opioids, and engaged in money laundering. According to court documents and evidence at trial, Patino played a critical role in developing and implementing a “shots-for-pills” protocol at several pain clinics whereby patients were required to receive unnecessary back injections in exchange for prescriptions of dangerous and high doses of medically unnecessary and addictive opioids. Read a story from The Detroit News and a Department of Justice press release.


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