Doctors called to account in insurance ‘scam’

Doncaster Royal Infirmary
Doncaster Royal Infirmary

ALLEGATIONS that a doctor signed a false whiplash claim in return for cash has led to calls that the medical profession must accept its role in insurance fraud.

The General Medical Council is understood to be investigating Dr Muhammad Raheel Shaikh, who works at Doncaster Royal Infirmary, over accusations he helped write a false claim.

It is alleged Dr Shaikh, of Dewsbury, charged £250 for an 18-minute consultation in which he agreed to assist a claimant despite the fact that they were suffering no injury whatsoever.

The appointment apparently took place at a clinic in Wakefield earlier this month and was staged in an attempt to show that unscrupulous doctors were prepared to sign off false reports.

Bradford East MP David Ward, who has campaigned over rocketing motor insurance premiums in recent years, said the case, if proven, would appear to show that doctors were “part of the problem”.

Mr Ward, who has also campaigned on the issue of staged car crashes which then allow groundless injury claims to be made, said it was “inevitable” doctors were involved in fraud cases.

Recent figures released by the Compensation Recovery Unit at the Department of Work and Pensions, showed that whiplash claims cost insurers £2bn a year, with bogus payouts adding £90 to the typical car insurance premium.

A spokesman for Doncaster and Bassetlaw Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Dr Shaikh is a junior doctor on a GP training programme.

“These allegations do not relate to Dr Shaikh’s work at Doncaster Royal Infirmary, but we are looking into the issues and will deal with them in line with our policies and procedures.”

Britain is widely regarded in the insurance industry as the whiplash capital of Europe.