An Oklahoma City mother has been charged with faking her 10-year-old daughter’s medical health information in order to get her procedures she did not need. Alisha Newman, 34, allegedly duped health-care providers across multiple states into giving her daughter an unnecessary pacemaker, feeding tube, and IV port. Newman was charged with physical abuse of a child causing great bodily harm and child neglect. Newman’s daughter was repeatedly hospitalized for months at a time for renal failure, organ damage, and severe infections. According to the complaint, Newman compounded the child’s risk by moving her around to doctors in Oklahoma, Texas, Ohio, Wisconsin, North Carolina, and Tennessee.
“There is a high degree of concern on the part of multiple medical providers that the... girl is the victim of factitious disorder by proxy on the part of the defendant,” said Alyssa Stephany, a medical director at the Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, who reviewed the girl’s records. Factitious disorder is also known as Munchausen syndrome by proxy, a mental disorder in which a parent makes up, exaggerates, or induces a condition for an otherwise healthy child, sometimes as a means to gain sympathy or attention. Newman’s bond is set at $50,000, and she has been ordered to have no contact with her daughter. Her first court appearance is scheduled for June 7.