Lake psychologist sentenced on fraud charges

A Lake Ozark psychologist practicing in the Lebanon, Mo., area was sentenced in federal court Wednesday for engaging in a $1 million scheme to defraud Medicare and Medicaid.

Rhett E. McCarty, 67, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Howard F. Sachs to three years in federal prison without parole.

The court also ordered McCarty to pay $1 million in restitution to Medicaid and Medicare.

McCarty was a licensed psychologist and private practitioner who provided psychotherapy services to recipients of Medicare and Medicaid in their homes.

On Aug. 16, 2012, McCarty pleaded guilty to health care fraud and to forgery.

According to court records, between Sept. 17, 2008, and April 5, 2012, McCarty submitted Medicare and Medicaid claims for daily or near daily psychotherapy services to 19 beneficiaries for which he was paid $1,276,334.

McCarty submitted claims saying he routinely saw beneficiaries seven days per week and worked long hours every day.

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