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Doctors’ medical licenses revoked

COAL GROVE — A little more than two weeks after two local doctors were indicted by a federal grand jury for medical fraud, the State Medical Board of Ohio this week permanently revoked the pair’s medical licenses.

Peter Tsai, 44, owner of Advanced Family Medical Center in Coal Grove, and his father, Tahsiung Tsai, 72, who owned Watkins-Tsai Imaging, also in Coal Grove, voluntarily signed orders to surrender their medical licenses on July 1. The orders were filed July 10 with the state medical board.

According to the orders signed by the doctors, the license forfeiture is “in lieu formal disciplinary proceedings … arising from recent indictment in United States Court of alleged charges including healthcare fraud, smuggling, money laundering and conspiracy.”

The two doctors, along with Ruey Tsai, 66, Tahsiung Tsai’s wife and co-owner of Watkins-Tsai Imaging, and Peter Tsai’s cousin, Wei Lih Sheih, aka “Wendy,” 41, who worked for both clinics, were indicted in late June on charges of conspiring to defraud health care benefit programs including Medicaid, Medicare and Tri-Care.

The defendants are also accused of performing and billing for CT scans related to medically unnecessary injections for purported piriformis syndrome, a problem affecting muscles in the back, and ignored and/or stopped documenting statements and complaints from patients that the injections were not working or were not wanted.

The indictment also accuses them of illegally importing adulterated Synvisc from other countries including Canada and Turkey and billing government insurance programs for the injections and transferring money into an account in a Canadian financial institution in order to buy the product.

In June 2011, federal agents and local law enforcement raided the businesses but the group wasn’t arrested until June 27.

They were taken to Cincinnati for their initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Karen Litkovitz and were released a on recognizance bond after they surrendered their passports. Wei Lih Sheih also had her initial appearance and was released on a recognizance bond.