Tag archives: STARK

Physicians’ compensation structure results in $17M Stark Law fine and CIA for hospital

Lexington Medical Center (“LMC”), a 428-bed hospital in South Carolina, has agreed to pay $17 million to resolve allegations that it violated the federal False Claims Act (“FCA”), 31 U.S.C. §§ 3729 et seq., and Physician Self-Referral Law (“Stark Law”), 42 U.S.C. § 1395nn, by allegedly providing improper financial incentives to 28 physicians for referrals.… Continue reading

CMS seeks feedback on standard form for SRDP submissions

CMS has asked for comments on a form for healthcare providers to disclose actual or potential violations of the federal self-referral (Stark) law.  The proposed format includes a disclosure form, a physician-information form, and a financial-analysis worksheet. As many providers know, CMS is significantly backlogged with self-disclosures, and so the standard form may help the agency more … Continue reading

Tuomey settles for $72.4 million, will be sold and under CIA

Facing a $237 million verdict for alleged illegal compensation arrangements with doctors, Tuomey Healthcare System has agreed to settle with the government for $72.4 million.  According to the government’s press release, Tuomey will be sold to Palmetto Health, a multi-hospital healthcare system, as part of the settlement.  Tuomey must also retain an independent review organization … Continue reading

Florida hospital pays $69.5 million to settle alleged Stark issues

The government has announced that a South Florida hospital district will pay $69.5 million to settle False Claims Act allegations related to financial arrangements with physicians. This case follows the trend of increased scrutiny of physician compensation, both by whistleblowers and by regulators: a trend that may escalate in light of the government’s fraud alert … Continue reading

CMS proposes Stark Law liberalizations

On July 8, CMS proposed significant changes to the Stark Law via a far-reaching proposed rule and commentary that would—and in a few cases may already—eliminate numerous technical traps under the current regulatory scheme. From eliminating time limitations in connection with ‘holdovers’ of existing arrangements, to affording greater flexibility in signature timing, to clarifying that … Continue reading

$237 million judgment against Tuomey stands

Tuomey Healthcare System Inc. owes the government $237.4 million after losing its Fourth Circuit appeal of a judgment imposed after a jury found the hospital liable for violations of the Stark self-referral law and the False Claims Act. Tuomey has stated that it would likely need to file for bankruptcy based on the damages imposed in … Continue reading

D.C. Circuit sends HHS back to the drawing board on Medicare equipment lease rule

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) will be heading back to District Court—and likely the drawing board altogether—to grapple with a recent federal court holding that the Medicare equipment lease rule is probably illegal. The final rule, issued in 2008, effectively prohibits physicians who lease medical equipment to hospitals from referring their … Continue reading

Hospital executives found guilty of kickback scheme

Three former hospital executives have been convicted of defrauding federal healthcare programs through an alleged kickback scheme to pay doctors to refer patients to the hospital. An Illinois federal jury returned guilty verdicts on March 19, 2015 against the former owner and CEO of Chicago’s Sacred Heart Hospital on 26 counts alleging payment of kickbacks … Continue reading

OIG seeks input on safe harbors & special fraud alerts

The Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (“OIG”) has asked for recommendations to help develop new or revised safe harbors from the federal Anti-Kickback Act, according to a notice published on December 27, 2013. The OIG also asked for comments on developing new Special Fraud Alerts, which offer guidance to healthcare … Continue reading