By Tony Hanson

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The former head of the ophthalmology department at Temple University has begun serving a seven-year sentence, following his massive, multimillion-dollar fraud that cheated Temple and other health care programs (see previous stories).

Federal prosecutor Anthony Kyriakakis says Dr. Joseph Kubacki’s compensation was based in part on production, so he made notes on charts of patients he did not see, to boost billings.

Kyriakakis told the court before sentencing that Kubacki showed a stunning disregard for patient safety.

“Dr. Thomasine Gorry testified, and she said that in one instance when she did seek out his help, she was unable to have him help because at that time she saw that he appeared intoxicated and (she) decided not to ask him to help her see a patient,” Kyriakakis said.

Authorities say they have no evidence that any patients were physically harmed by the doctor’s fraud, which spanned at least a decade.

Temple says it has implemented additional safeguards to prevent such misconduct from recurring.

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