Utica-based surgeon must surrender license, pay restitution

Published Jun 13, 2018 at 4:00pm

A Utica-based surgeon accused of repeatedly trying to defraud the state Workers’ Compensation program surrendered his medical license and has been ordered to repay nearly $87,000, authorities have reported.

Dr. Gregory B. Shankman, 70, of Clinton, was ordered by County Court Judge Robert L. Bauer to pay $86,996.31 in restitution and to surrender his medical license on two counts of second-degree offering a false instrument for filing, according to the state Inspector General’s Office.

Shankman was also granted a one-year conditional discharge.

According to the state Inspector General’s Office, Shankman traveled to Buffalo to perform medical examinations related to Workers’ Comp, while simultaneously billing for medical services that he claimed he was conducting at his office on Genesee Street in Utica. 

Authorities said Shankman was legally required to be in his Utica office for those examinations.

Authorities also said that, when Shankman was out of his Utica office, it was staffed by a physician’s assistant who was not authorized to examine or treat Worker’s Compensation patients without Shankman’s direct supervision.

“This former doctor enriched himself by practicing fraud instead of medicine,” said Inspector General Leahy Scott in a release.

“His criminal acts enabled him to travel extensively and vacation abroad while shunning the most basic requirements of his job,” the inspector general said.

“I will continue to use all resources at my disposal to protect the integrity of the Workers’ Compensation system and pursue anyone who commits fraud against it,” Scott added.

Shankman unlawfully billed for more than $50,000 through these schemes, officials stated.

Specifically, Shankman was not in his office for more than 150 days between January 2015 and August 2017, even though he certified that he was, authorities said.

Shankman instead traveled to medical offices near Buffalo, or out of state, and even once to Iceland in the spring of 2016, officials said.