St. Louis Post-Dispatch / Associated Press, April 17, 2013

At least two doctors at a Chicago hospital endangered patients by intentionally over-sedating them and performing unnecessary tracheotomies in a bid to boost profits, a graphic and wide-ranging complaint released by federal prosecutors Tuesday alleges. The document doesn't directly say patients at Sacred Heart Hospital died as a result of the procedures that involve cutting a hole into someone's windpipe, but it notes mortality rates from one of the doctor's tracheotomies were far higher than average. The investigation of the hospital dating back to 2011 led to arrests on Tuesday of the hospital's owner, Edward Novak, 58, of Park Ridge, as well as another executive and four doctors in an alleged conspiracy to exchange kickbacks for referral of patients insured by Medicare and Medicaid.
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