15 latest healthcare industry lawsuits, settlements

From the Illinois Supreme court agreeing to review a hospital tax exemption case to a whistle-blower alleging 33 hospitals submitted more than $1 billion in fictitious costs, here are the latest healthcare industry lawsuits and settlements making headlines.

1. Former healthcare CFO charged with bribery, fraud
A federal grand jury returned a 47-count indictment against the former CFO of a Medicaid-funded behavioral health system in North Carolina.

2. Illinois Supreme Court to review constitutionality of hospital tax exemptions
The Illinois Supreme Court will review a case that focuses on the constitutionality of exempting nonprofit hospitals in Illinois from paying property taxes.

3. Feds join executive's $50M false claims suit against Prime Healthcare
The Department of Justice intervened in a whistle-blower lawsuit against Prime Healthcare, alleging the Ontario, Calif.-based hospital chain defrauded the federal government of millions of dollars by billing Medicare for medically unnecessary inpatient short-stay admissions, which should have been classified as outpatient or observation cases.

4. Trinity Health hospital to pay $107M to settle pension mismanagement lawsuit
Hartford, Conn.-based St. Francis Hospital, part of Livonia, Mich.-based Trinity Health, will pay $107 million to settle a lawsuit alleging it mismanaged its pension plan.

5. Theranos faces consumer fraud lawsuit
Palo Alto, Calif.-based blood-testing startup Theranos was hit with a lawsuit brought by the individuals who paid for tests in 2014 and 2015 that the company recalled last week.

6. Whistle-blower claims 33 hospitals submitted more than $1B in fictitious costs
A whistle-blower recently defended the viability of a federal complaint he filed, saying 33 hospitals in North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia benefited from fictitious cost report claims submitted to Medicare and Medicaid.

7. Ariz. Supreme Court: Hospitals can enforce liens for Medicaid reimbursement
The Arizona Supreme Court ruled hospitals can record and enforce liens on patients' legal settlements to get additional or full reimbursement for the costs of providing care for some Medicaid patients.

8. NY pharmacist pleads guilty in $2.7M fraud scheme
Andrew Barrett, a New York pharmacist and pharmacy owner, pleaded guilty to healthcare fraud and filing false tax returns.

9. Physician assistant excluded from Medicare program for accepting kickbacks
A 73-year-old physician assistant from Alama, Mich., will be excluded from the Medicare and Medicaid programs for at least five years for accepting $12,600 in illegal kickbacks.

10. HCA sues Florida over $118k tax bill for vacant facility
Nashville, Tenn.-based Hospital Corporation of America closed Edward White Hospital in St. Petersburg, Fla., in late 2014. However, the Pinellas County tax collector issued the shuttered hospital a tax bill of $118,657 in 2015.An HCA entity, Edward White Hospital, Inc., filed a lawsuit, claiming the appraised value of $5.4 million that the 2015 tax bill was based on is too high for a vacant property.

11. Physician admits to billing Medicare for dead patients
A suspended physician pleaded guilty to two counts of healthcare fraud in federal court, in a scheme that involved billing Medicare for services provided to deceased patients.

12. Judge blocks Ohio law that would cut funding to Planned Parenthood
A federal judge in Cincinnati temporarily blocked the passage of a state law that would have defunded 28 Planned Parenthood clinics in Ohio.

13. Husband and wife sentenced to prison for bilking $2.7M from Sheppard Pratt Health System through IT company
A husband and wife were sentenced to three and a half years in prison after pleading guilty to pilfering $2.7 million from Towson, Md.-based Sheppard Pratt Health System by billing it for IT services through a company the couple controlled.

14. Fla. physician gets 25 years in prison for 3 overdose deaths
A federal judge sentenced a 76-year-old physician to 25 years in prison for the deaths of three patients who overdosed on pain medications he prescribed.

15. Iowa insurance commissioner sues feds over failed co-op
Iowa insurance commissioner Nick Gerhart filed suit against HHS and CMS, alleging federal health officials are withholding $20 million owed to a failed Iowa health insurance co-op.

More articles on health law:

Hospitals claim the ACA demands mergers: Are judges warming up to the argument?
Senator sues to prevent Rhode Island hospital from scaling back services
Bill seeks to close healthcare program exclusion loophole in fraud cases




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