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A Virginia gynecologist has been convicted of deceiving patients into getting unnecessary medical procedures, some of which left women in his care unable to have children, in order to bilk millions from insurers.
Javaid Perwaiz, who was accused of carrying out “unnecessary” and “irreversible” procedures, such as hysterectomies, on multiple patients, was found guilty by a federal jury Monday on 52 counts related to the scheme, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia announced in a statement.
For nearly a decade, Perwaiz, an obstetrician-gynecologist, defrauded insurers out of millions of dollars for life-altering “invasive” surgeries, which weren’t “medically necessary,” officials said. Prosecutors stated he often misled patients into having the procedures.
“Doctors are in positions of authority and trust and take an oath to do no harm to their patients,” special agent Karl Schumann, of the FBI’s Norfolk field office, said in the statement. “With unnecessary, invasive medical procedures, Dr. Perwaiz not only caused enduring complications, pain and anxiety to his patients, but he assaulted the most personal part of their lives and even robbed some of their future.”
In some cases, Perwaiz deceived patients, advising them they “needed the surgeries to avoid cancer,” the Department of Justice said. Perwaiz, who has practiced in Virginia since the 1980s, operated the sprawling health care fraud scheme between 2010 and 2019.
The Virginia doctor also backdated medical forms and doctored records for patients so he could perform — and be compensated for — the delivery of the patient’s newborn child. He often intentionally induced such births prematurely to cover his tracks, according to prosecutors.
The gynecologist also charged insurance companies for diagnostic procedures that were completely fabricated, according to prosecutors.
“Dr. Perwaiz preyed upon his trusting patients and committed horrible crimes to feed his greed,” said G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia. “Nothing was going to stop him but the brave victims who testified against him and law enforcement.”
The disgraced OB/GYN, who will be sentenced next year, faces a maximum penalty of 465 years in prison.
“In his desire to line his pockets, Dr. Perwaiz callously ignored his patients’ health and well-being by conducting medically unnecessary and irreversible medical procedures,” special agent Maureen R. Dixon, of the Department of Health and Human Services, added.
Officials noted that Perwaiz had a long history of fraudulent behavior, which previously led to the revocation of his medical license. Prosecutors aren’t even positive about his real age.
“We don’t know for sure,” Joshua Stueve, a spokesperson for the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of Virginia, told Oxygen.com. “He has used multiple DOBs: one puts him at 68, the other at 70.”
During his three-week trial last month, dozens of Perwaiz’s victims, as well as former medical colleagues, testified against him.
“I’m glad that he can’t do it to anyone else,” Karen Lane, 53, a longtime patient who had her uterus and ovaries removed by Perwaiz roughly two decades ago, told the Washington Post.
Lane, who didn’t testify and wasn’t officially identified as a victim in the case by federal investigators, is insistent, however, that Perwaiz took advantage of her when she was in her early 30s.
“I still feel left out, like he didn’t get anything for what he did to me,” she said.
Perwaiz’s attorney, Larry Woodward Jr., didn’t respond to Oxygen.com on Tuesday when asked for comment.
Perwaiz is scheduled to be sentenced on March 31, a spokesperson for the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of Virginia, confirmed.
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