Kansas cardiologist pays $1.5M to settle Medicare suit

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Cardiologist Roger W. Evans, MD, and his company will pay $1.5 million as settlement in a federal false-claims suit, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Kansas.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General and the Kansas district attorney’s office launched an investigation of Evans and his company, EECP Heart Center of Kansas, alleging that he and the company filed false Medicare claims between July 2005 and June 2009. EECP stands for enhanced external counterpulsation.

According to government investigators, the claims were for providing enhanced counterpulsation therapy, a treatment of coronary artery disease that was performed at company clinics without Evans being present.

Medicare requires that a physician directly supervise the procedure, which involves the use of multiple compression cuffs applied to the lower trunk and legs and can take an hour for one treatment. Treatments can be done once or twice daily, five days a week. The full therapeutic process may require as many as 35 treatments.  

Evans' online resume indicates that he works for Cypress Heart in Wichita, Kan., previous known as Kansas Cardiology Associates, and is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and the American College of Cardiology. The resume also indicates that he's been practicing medicine for more than 40 years.

Evans and his company did not admit any wrongdoing, the district attorney’s office reported. In a May 21 interview with the Kansas City Star in Kansas City, Mo., Evans said he was not aware that his presence was required. According to the Kansas City Star, Evans shut down clinics in Wichita, Great Bend, Liberal and Neodesha in May 2010 after the investigation was initiated.

Evans graduated from the University of Kansas School of Medicine in 1964 and completed his residency at Madigan General Hospital in Tacoma, Wash., in 1968.