Heart Check America fined $3.2 million

The X-Ray Certification Unit of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has order Heart Check America to pay nearly $3.2 million for alleged violations of the Colorado Rules and Regulations Pertaining to Radiation Control.

The company closed its Denver office in May after state inspectors confirmed it was conducting computed tomography scans on patients without an order from a Colorado licensed doctor.

The compliance order names Heart Check America and individuals Sheila Haddad, David Haddad, Lisa Haddad and Todd Kaplan.

Nine violations were covered in the penalty: failure to have a Colorado-licensed doctor supervise the facility’s electron beam CT scanner; exposing patients to the scanner without a written order from a doctor; failure to have procedures in place to make sure the CT was safe, failing to register as a healing arts screening program in the state.

“When we contacted Heart Check America in April, we gave them an opportunity to correct their violations,” said Brian Vamvakias, x-ray certification unit leader. ‘They stopped all communication with us, and we were left with no choice but to proceed with escalated enforcement and assess these penalties.”

The people named have 30 days to pay the fine or request the hearing. The money will go to the state’s general fund.

Heart Check America was exposing about 150 customers a week to potentially unnecessary radiation doses without a doctor’s involvement, Vamvakias said.

Heart Check America also operates clinics in Nevada, Illinois, New York, South Carolina, California and Washington, D.C. The company’s former Denver landlord will auction the company’s assets on Aug. 11 to satisfy debts. The Colorado Department of Public Health and environment will be present to ensure that whoever purchases the CT scanner will comply with state radiation safety regulations.

People who believe they have been defrauded by the company should file a complaint with the Attorney General at 303-866-5189.