Dr. Suess complained of Medicaid cuts one week; the next he was charged with Medicaid fraud. It's almost poetic.

December 27, 2011

An out-spoken doctor, who complained last week about how the state is handling Medicaid, has been indicted on Medicaid fraud charges.  Dr. Larry Suess, 55, Hanson, KY, was indicted Thursday by the Hopkins County Grand Jury on 14 counts of Medicaid fraud.

Suess, a child psychiatrist, is accused of fraudulently billing Medicaid for therapy sessions involving 12 patients.  He allegedly up charged for therapy from January 2005 to September 2007. The fraud case was investigated by the Attorney General’s Office of Medicaid Fraud and Abuse Control.

ABC 36 News had its camera rolling last Thursday when Suess railed against managed care of Medicaid by three private companies, a new, cost cutting approach in Kentucky.  Suess complained about lapses in patient medication coverage and more restrictive Medicaid programs during his appearance before the state’s Advisory Council on Medical Assistance.

“I am not one that believes in adding medication to problems already there,” Suess testified while talking about medication lapses.  “I'm more likely to take kids off medication."

He told a gripping story of a patient, a 12 year old boy, who tried to hang himself after going without a drug which helped stabilize him.

Phone call and email messages left for Dr. Suess Friday morning were not returned by publication time.

Suess is President of the Kentucky Osteopathic Medical Association.  On the group’s web site there’s an open letter from Suess about the state’s switch to managed care.

Now in hot water for allegedly bilking the system, Suess will be arraigned on 14 felony counts on January 10 in Hopkins Circuit Court.  A person in the booking office at the Hopkins County Jail said Suess was released from jail Thursday, the day a warrant for his arrest was issued.

He faces up to five years in prison on each count if convicted.

On a side note, Suess ran for state representative in 2010, losing to current lawmaker, Jim Gooch, in the Democratic primary.

Source: Greg Stotelmyer, "Child psychiatrist indicted," ABC-TV 36 (Lexington, KY), December 23, 2011.


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