11 civil suits filed against doctor who wrongly diagnosed cancer

By Mara MacDonald, Local 4 Reporter, @MaraMacDonald
Published On: Aug 06 2014 10:51:25 PM EDT
Updated On: Aug 06 2014 11:00:00 PM EDT

A year ago Wednesday, the feds charged Dr. Farid Fata with a laundry list of criminal charges. Now 11 civil suits from former patients and their families have been filed.

ROCHESTER, Mich. -

A year ago Wednesday, the feds charged Dr. Farid Fata with a laundry list of criminal charges. Now 11 civil suits from former patients and their families have been filed.

Fata stands accused of bilking millions of dollars from the insurance industry by administering drugs like chemotherapy to patients who didn’t need it and delivering bogus diagnoses.

Donna Virkus' father, Donald, was one of Fata’s patients. Her 78-year-old father was referred to Fata over concerns that he had esophageal cancer.

"It’s unbelievable. I can’t believe we put our trust into a doctor that was supposed to take care of him and ended up killing him," Virkus said.

Virkus said a review of her father’s file shows he never had cancer to begin with but was given chemo for a two-year period and developed a blood-related cancer because of it. She’s one of a handful who attorney Donna MacKenzie filed civil suits for in Oakland County Wednesday.

"There were, I believe, a number of players who either knew or should have known what was going on. How could something this widespread go on for so long?” MacKenzie said.

Fata sits in federal prison waiting for his federal criminal trial. It is expected to get underway later this year. The civil suits aren’t just targeting Fata but other doctors in the practice as well as nurses. Crittenton Hospital and McClaren Cancer Center are also targeted in the suits.

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