Bernard Ogon was a New Jersey physician. As previously covered in the Case Tracker, he was alleged to have signed prescriptions for compounded medications regardless of medical need and without establishing a doctor-patient relationship, often never seeing the patient at all. After pleading guilty in 2019 to conspiring to commit healthcare fraud, Ogon was sentenced today to 33 months’ imprisonment and restitution of over $24 million. The U.S. Attorney’s office issued this press release.
Ogon’s case is another example of the term “telemedicine fraud” being used loosely and inaccurately. While companies and doctors purportedly related to “telemedicine” were involved in the scheme, there was little if any actual telemedicine or telehealth at issue. In many cases, there wasn’t a patient interaction–via technology, in-person, or otherwise–at all. Sometimes fraud is just that–fraud.