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One of the issues that New York City physicians should be aware of is the importance of entering and maintaining accurate and up-to-date medical records for each patient. Not only is this important in terms of providing appropriate patient care, but failing to maintain proper medical records may lead to harsh professional consequences, and in some cases, even to criminal charges.
When a NYC doctor is accused of any type of misconduct related to patient care, whether the charges are before a professional board or in criminal or civil court, this doctor’s medical records are one of the most important pieces of evidence. For example, in cases involving Medicaid or private insurance fraud, the medical records would show whether or not the disputed service or treatment was documented as medically necessary. If it is alleged that the physician failed to treat a patient competently, the medical records can be the piece of evidence that supports this allegation or destroys it.
Unfortunately, some physicians sabotage their own defense by presenting medical records that are incomplete, improperly authenticated, are missing consent forms, are illegible, are missing crucial information, or contain improper erasures or changes. When a physician belatedly realizes this deficiency and attempts to alter the medical records, he or she commits a separate instance of professional misconduct and may be guilty of a misdemeanor crime under New York State law, which prohibits falsifying or altering medical records.
If you are a NYC physician and you have concerns about an investigation or prosecution for professional misconduct, consult an experienced health care defense attorney at once. Do not try to “doctor” the evidence or attempt other self-help measures – more often than not, these measures will only harm your case further and render you vulnerable to additional charges and penalties. Our highly skilled and knowledgeable attorneys will analyze the facts of your individual case and develop the best strategy to obtain a favorable outcome. Call our experienced New York health care license defense attorneys at (212) 577-6677 to schedule an immediate consultation.