A doctor who has been charged with performing a slew of unnecessary surgical procedures is being held without bond in Virginia. Federal prosecutors announced that Dr. Javaid Perwaiz performed unnecessary and unwanted surgical procedures on his patients, some of which were performed without their knowledge or permission. Perwaiz is facing multiple criminal charges of health care fraud.
According to an FBI arrest warrant, Perwaiz has a long and troubling history of performing unnecessary procedures on unknowing patients. This history dates back at least to 1982, which is when he lost his hospital privileges due to “poor clinical judgment” and for performing unnecessary surgeries. Perwaiz has been named in at least eight malpractice lawsuits that allege: he falsified patient records to justify procedures, he failed to use less invasive techniques, and he provided substandard care that caused permanent injuries to three patients and life-threatening injuries to two patients.
According to the Assistant U.S. Attorney, the current affidavit focuses on four cases, but many more are forthcoming. Prosecutors have interviewed dozens of additional former patients and have heard from nearly 200 who allege similar experiences. The investigation commenced in 2018 when federal law enforcement received a tip from a hospital employee who suspected Perwaiz of performing unnecessary surgeries.
In one case, Perwaiz performed annual surgeries on a woman under the guise of treating endometriosis. Years later, when the woman visited a fertility specialist, she was informed that both of her fallopian tubes were “burnt down to nubs” and that natural conception would be impossible. The woman had no knowledge that her fallopian tubes had been removed, nor did she consent to any such procedure. In another case, a patient consented to have the physician perform outpatient laparoscopic surgery to remove just her ovaries. When she awoke, she found that Perwaiz had performed a total abdominal hysterectomy and had perforated her bladder during the surgery. She developed sepsis and was hospitalized for six days. The investigation found that the physician routinely lied to women about having cancer in order to coerce them into consenting to additional unnecessary procedures.
Perwaiz’s motive for performing the unnecessary procedures, according to prosecutors, was financial gain. He stands accused of submitting fraudulent claims to health care benefit programs, including Medicaid, seeking reimbursement for the procedures even when many patients were unaware that the procedures had even performed. According to the affidavit, the doctor owns five luxury automobiles, including one Bentley and four Mercedes-Benz vehicles, and claimed on a 2016 loan application that he has $200,000 in “Gold/Art” in his home. In 1996, Perwaiz pleaded guilty to tax evasion. His medical license was temporarily revoked but was reinstated in 1998.
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