2011-09-16 / Top Stories

Solstice Lead Physician Indicted

By Nicholas Briano


Dr. Jesse Stoff (left) and Dmitry Shteyman (right) at the 2009 Solstice Wellness ribbon cutting. Both have been arrested for their roles in an alleged Medicare fraud scheme. Dr. Jesse Stoff (left) and Dmitry Shteyman (right) at the 2009 Solstice Wellness ribbon cutting. Both have been arrested for their roles in an alleged Medicare fraud scheme. More than a year after the federal government shut down Solstice Wellness in Rockaway Park, arrests are still being made in the $3.5 million Medicare scheme.

Lead physician Jesse Stoff was arrested last Wednesday for his role in the scheme that included paying Medicare beneficiaries $50 cash kickback for each visit they made to Solstice Wellness, which was formerly located at 230 Beach 102 Street inside the Sands Point Professional Plaza.

Dr. Stoff was not part of the initial May 2010 raid that included the arrest of Solstice operators Dmitry Shteyman and his brother Alexsey, along with employees Maxsim Shvedkin and receptionist Sara Kalantarov. Patients of the center were also arrested in the months thereafter for their alleged roles.

Solstice was seized by a joint task force of the US Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG) and the U.S. Department of Justice. At that time, agents in charge had no evidence indicating Stoff was directly involved in the scheme, despite being the lead physician.

According to the indictment, further investigations reveal that Stoff and another physician at Solstice, Dr. Billy Geris, knowingly saw patients who were being paid cash kickbacks by the clinic’s operators.

Tom O’Donnell, DOJ special agent in charge, says the two doctors “caused the submission of false and fraudulent claims to Medicare for medically unnecessary physical therapy and diagnostic tests, despite knowing that patients were getting paid $50 per day cash kickbacks to patronize the clinic for such medical services.”

Both doctors have been charged with conspiracy to commit health care fraud and health care fraud.

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