As we predicted in our year-end post on civil and criminal enforcement trends, 2018 is already off to strong start in opioid-related enforcement against individual providers and associated practices. Earlier this month, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced that a Michigan physician, Dr. Rodney Moret, was sentenced to 75 months in prison for his role in conspiracies to distribute prescription pills illegally and to defraud Medicare. The conduct alleged against Dr. Moret is particularly extreme, but nevertheless reflects the government’s commitment to ferreting out opioid-related misconduct. Continue Reading Federal Enforcement Actions Continue to Focus on Opioid-Related Misconduct
Happy New Year! As we kick off 2017, our Health Care Enforcement Defense team brings you its annual review of key government policies, regulations, and enforcement actions in 2016, and the impact these trends are expected to have on enforcement in the year ahead. We start with a look at the Yates Memo and the uptick in the prosecution of individuals that has occurred since its publication. Stay tuned for the rest of our series and an invitation to our annual webinar, Health Care Enforcement Review & 2017 Outlook, on Wednesday, January 25 at 1:00 p.m. ET.
In the year since the Department of Justice (DOJ) issued what is known as the Yates Memo, we have already seen that it in fact dictated actual change in DOJ enforcement policy. While the long-held DOJ goal of charging individuals has not changed, the Yates Memo formalizes the requirement that federal prosecutors focus on identifying and pursuing potentially culpable individuals, and it establishes internal oversight mechanisms to ensure that they do. In support of that reinvigorated goal and as intended, according to Deputy Attorney General Yates, the Yates Memo has changed the behavior of companies that learn of potential wrongdoing. Companies have to make early and important decisions about how they conduct internal investigations, and they must quickly decide whether to disclose to the government – perhaps even before any conclusions are reached – to secure the greatest cooperation credit. Continue Reading Health Care Enforcement Review and 2017 Outlook: Yates Memo in Action
The long-running test-referral prosecution against Biodiagnostic Laboratory Services, LLC (“BLS”), a New Jersey clinical blood testing laboratory; its owner and employees; and BLS’s referring physicians recently reached another milestone. In a criminal case that the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey has called the “largest physician bribery case ever prosecuted,” resulting in 40 guilty pleas, BLS was sentenced on June 28, 2016 and ordered to forfeit all of its assets.
In addition, on June 30, 2016, the 27th BLS referring physician pleaded guilty to charges that he violated the Federal Travel Act by taking bribes from BLS. The physician admitted that, between April 2011 and June 2012, BLS paid him approximately $1,500 per month. This physician plea is another in the long line of individual criminal pleas, 38 of which are catalogued here. Continue Reading Biodiagnostic Laboratory Services Sentenced; Another Physician Pleads Guilty