A Saskatoon allergist found guilty of making fraudulent patient billings will be suspended from practising medicine for three months.
Dr. Larry Hardy, 66, was also ordered Friday to pay a $5,000 fine and to cover the $74,000 cost of his disciplinary hearing before the College of Physicians and Surgeons.
The penalty was a joint agreement between John Hardy, the doctor’s son and lawyer, and the college’s lawyer Bryan Salte. However, when the college’s executive council considered the case Friday, the $5,000 fine was added.
Dr. Hardy was found guilty in April of billing for consultations when he never actually saw the patient and for billing some patients as if they’d been referred to him, when they hadn’t. The referral rate is worth $45 to $60 more than other consultations.
Salte said misconduct cases involving billing are unusual. He can recall three in the past 15 years.
John Hardy said his father won’t appeal the disciplinary committee’s finding or the penalty. The suspension begins July 10. Dr. Hardy will have about 2½ years to pay the $74,000 bill for the hearing.
He said it’s hoped the case won’t lessen patients’ confidence in Hardy’s abilities. “There has never been any suggestion by anybody that there was any sort of problem with the quality of medical care he was giving his patients.”
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