DOJ Reports $3 Billion in 2019 False Claims Act Recoveries

January 14, 2020 | Eric D. Fader | False Claims Act | Fraud and Abuse | Hospitals | Litigation | Medical Devices and Wearables | Medicare and Medicaid | Pharmaceuticals

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced last week that in the fiscal year ended September 30, 2019, it obtained more than $3 billion in total recoveries from civil cases brought under the False Claims Act (FCA). The total, a slight increase from the $2.9 billion recovered in the prior fiscal year, included both settlements and judgments.

Recoveries from fraud actions involving the healthcare and life sciences industries accounted for about $2.6 billion in federal funds, or about 85% of all recoveries. Prime targets included pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers, managed care providers, hospitals, pharmacies, hospice organizations, laboratories and physicians, many of which paid additional amounts to settle with state Medicaid programs.

Of the $3 billion recovered, over $2.1 billion arose from qui tam (whistleblower) lawsuits filed under the FCA. Some of the year’s largest settlements involved pharmaceutical companies, including manufacturers of opioids. DOJ’s press release also stressed its continuing commitment to hold accountable the individual owners of companies that enter into FCA settlements.

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