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Other Government Health Programs

This archive displays posts tagged as relevant to government healthcare programs other than Medicare and Medicaid, and fraud in those programs. You may also be interested in our pages:

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May 4, 2021

Delaware-based pharmaceutical company Incyte Corporation has agreed to pay $12.6 million to resolve allegations of violating the Anti-Kickback Statute and False Claims Act in connection with its myelofibrosis drug, Jafaki.  Despite federal laws against illegal remuneration to federal healthcare program beneficiaries, Incyte allegedly wielded its influence as the sole donor of a foundation to coerce the foundation into illegally covering the copays of Medicare and TRICARE patients taking Jafaki.  The misconduct continued from 2011 through 2014 before it was revealed in a qui tam suit by former compliance executive turned whistleblower, Justin Dillon.  Dillon will receive approximately $3.59 million for his efforts.  DOJ; USAO EDPA

April 29, 2021

Over two dozen defendants who were part of an extensive prescription drug fraud scheme involving Alabama-based Northside Pharmacy d/b/a Global Compounding Pharmacy have been sentenced to prison.  The defendants included company executives and managers, prescribers, billers, and sales representatives who, between 2013 and 2016, billed insurers such as Medicare and TRICARE for massive quantities of medically unnecessary prescription drugs.  In just that short period of time, the defendants caused insurers to pay nearly $50 million in medically unnecessary claims, with more than $13 million arising from improper payments to prescribers, and more than $8.4 million for prescriptions written out to Global employees themselves.  USAO NDAL

March 24, 2021

Two men in Mississippi have been sentenced to 7 years in prison and ordered to pay over $16 million in restitution to Medicare, TRICARE, and Express Scripts, as well as forfeiture of close to $1 million, for their roles in a multimillion-dollar healthcare fraud scheme.  Dempsey Bryan Levi and Jeffrey Wayne Rollins, the operators of the Gardens Pharmacy, LLC, had previously admitted to soliciting and incentivizing recruiters to obtain prescriptions for highly reimbursed compounded medications, and soliciting and incentivizing doctors to authorize those prescriptions.  USAO SDMS

March 23, 2021

The former owner of Shape of Behavior (TSOB), a Texas-based therapy service provider for children with autism, has agreed to pay $2.7 million to resolve allegations that nine of the provider’s locations submitted improper claims to TRICARE.  The misconduct was uncovered by TRICARE’s managed care support contractor, Humana Military Program Integrity, and involved claims that could not be substantiated by medical records, claims involving excessive hours by individual providers, and misrepresentations of the identities of actual rendering providers.  USAO SDTX

March 18, 2021

A Michigan-based cardiologist, Dinesh Shah, and his practice, Michigan Physicians Group, P.C. (MPG), have agreed to pay $2 million to resolve allegations of defrauding Medicare, Medicaid, and TRICARE by submitting claims for medically unnecessary diagnostic testing, in violation of the False Claims Act.  In separate qui tam suits filed by former employees Arlene Klinke and Khrystyna Mala, the whistleblowers alleged that between 2006 and 2017, Shah and MPG billed government healthcare programs for Ankle Brachial Index tests, Toe Brachial Index tests, and Nuclear Stress Tests that were ordered and provided without regard to necessity.  USAO EDMI

March 16, 2021

Jack Lee Stapleton and Jack Hunter Stapleton, the former owners of a Florida-based telemarketing company known as CV McDowell LLC or J&J Tel Marketing LLC (the Stapleton Entities), have agreed to pay at least $4 million to resolve a qui tam case by a former employee alleging violations of the False Claims Act.  According to whistleblower Dwayne Thornton, the Stapletons solicited prospective patients through telemarketing calls, convinced them to accept compounded drugs regardless of need, and then procured prescriptions and sent them to compounding pharmacies that agreed to pay the Stapletons half of all TRICARE reimbursements.  USAO MDFL

January 22, 2021

The estate of Dr. Patrick T. Hunter has agreed to pay more than $1.7 million to resolve allegations that the urologist, who passed away in 2019, submitted false claims to Medicare and TRICARE for medically unnecessary procedures and received improper payments for them from the Orlando Center for Outpatient Surgery.  Between 2010 and 2016, Dr. Hunter allegedly performed the lithotripsy procedures, which break up kidney stones, on patients who either did not have kidney stones or were not medically indicated for them.  For initiating the successful qui tam suit, whistleblower Scott Thompson will receive a relator’s share of $385,000.  USAO MDFL

January 15, 2021

The co-owner of multiple compounding pharmacies and pharmaceutical distributors in Mississippi has been sentenced to 18 years in prison and ordered to pay over $287 million in restitution and over $56 million in forfeiture after pleading guilty to healthcare fraud and money laundering.  As part of his guilty plea, Wade Ashley Walters admitted to being the mastermind behind a four-year scheme that defrauded TRICARE and private health benefit programs of over $287 million.  To perpetuate the fraud, Walters and his co-conspirators solicited and paid recruiters to procure prescriptions for highly reimbursed compounded medications, solicited and paid physicians to authorize prescriptions for same, adjusted prescription formulas to ensure the highest reimbursement possible, and improperly waived or reduced mandatory beneficiary copayments.  USAO SDMS

December 31, 2020

Department of Veterans Affairs contractor TriWest Healthcare Alliance Corp. has agreed to pay $179.7 million to resolve allegations that it improperly retained overpayments received from the VA.  TriWest administered portions of VA’s former Veterans Choice Program and its Patient-Centered Community Care Program (PC3), which enable veterans to obtain VA-paid healthcare from private providers.  At times, VA allegedly paid TriWest twice for the same services, or paid for services for which TriWest received full or partial reimbursement from other healthcare providers, and TriWest failed to return those overpayments.  DOJ

December 4, 2020

Joint Active Systems, Inc. (JAS), a durable medical equipment manufacturer, and New England Orthotics & Prosthetics, LLP (NEOPS) have agreed to pay $1.59 million and $90,000 respectively to resolve allegations of defrauding multiple federal healthcare programsincluding TRICARE, Medicare, and Medicaid programs in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Islandthrough a variety of fraudulent schemes.  According to a qui tam suit filed by two former NEOPS employees, JAS allegedly recruited NEOPS to bill Medicare and Medicaid for custom-fabricated orthotics that were not custom-fabricated orthotics, nor medically necessary, and falsely claim that JAS-affiliated sales representatives were properly trained to treat patients during fittings.  Additionally, JAS allegedly overcharged the VA for its devices by as much as 300%.  For blowing the whistle on these fraud schemes, the whistleblowers will receive a 17% share of the settlement proceeds.  USAO MA
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