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Second FCA Whistleblower Case Dismissed – What’s a Lawyer to Do?

For the second time in the last few weeks, a Florida district court judge has dismissed a whistleblower lawsuit filed against a healthcare company alleging fraud. The most recent dismissal, which took place on February 6, was of a lawsuit against electronic software company Epic that alleged it had overbilled for anesthesia procedures. In dismissing […]

DOJ Memo Spurs Speculation Over Future of Whistleblower Cases

Should a recent internal memo from the U.S. Department of Justice on the dismissal of qui tam cases serve as a bellwether for the healthcare industry, or is it just a re-statement of existing policy issued in light of the increasing number of such cases being filed. That’s the question being asked by many attorneys […]

Appeals Court Issues Precedential Ruling in Charitable Assistance Organization Kickback Case

The increase in enforcement activity related to donations made by pharmaceutical manufacturers to nonprofit patient charitable assistance organizations has resulted in a number of whistleblower or Qui Tam lawsuits. Those lawsuits have hinged on the idea that such donations may be viewed as illegal kickbacks because they could be seen as a means to steer […]

Judge: Third Try Won’t be the Charm for Whistleblower

A U.S. District Court Judge earlier this month tossed a whistleblower lawsuit filed against a Florida compounding pharmacy finding that the former sales representative who filed the initial lawsuit in 2013 failed to make sufficient pleadings. However, defendant RS Compounding LLC in Tampa is not completely off the hook. The government intervened in, and the […]

OIG Notifies Pharmaceutical Companies They Can Provide Free Medication to Those Losing Charitable Assistance

In late November, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General revoked an Advisory Opinion that previously protected a patient-assistance charity from becoming the target of kickback charges. In a follow-up to that ruling this month, the OIG has sent a letter to Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) […]

OIG WorkPlan Update for December Includes Six New Initiatives

The HHS Office of the Inspector General continues to update its Work Plan each month and ended the year in December with six new initiatives, two of which focus on the opioid epidemic and how to better monitor and prevent drug abuse. Status Update on States’ Efforts on Medicaid-Provider Enrollment OIG will determine just how […]

What You Should Know About OCR’s HIPAA Privacy Audits

Have you received a request from HHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR) asking that you provide the name of your privacy official along with any additional criteria? If you have, then you likely are aware that you may be the focus of a HIPAA privacy audit. This is part of the Phase 2 HIPAA Audit […]

Healthcare Professionals a Big Part of the #MeToo Movement

By now you undoubtedly have read or heard stories about sexual harassment taking place in Hollywood, Washington and the workplace in general. The #MeToo movement is creating a groundswell of support for those who have been the target of sexual harassment, as well as causing many who may have remained silent to be heard. For […]

OIG Revokes Advisory Opinion on Patient-assistance Charity

In what is being called a first-of-its-kind move, the Office of Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services late last month revoked an advisory opinion it issued, and later modified, relating to a patient-assistance charity. In its opinion, the OIG said it made its determination to revoke its original opinion “based […]

When Social Media and Patient Privacy Collide

Earlier this month, three employees of an assisted living facility in Glendale, Arizona were let go after allegedly videotaping patients and posting them to Snapchat. The video shows employees making fun of elderly residents in their care and, instead of taking care of one woman asking for help, the employee continues to film and make […]

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