DaVita HealthCare Sets Aside $495 Million for Qui Tam Case
Whatever happened to business integrity? What happened to the days of being able to trust the businesses of our nation? More importantly, how can we trust companies that do multi-million dollar business with the Federal Government? When fraudulent practices reign, what happens to the innocent victims?
DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc., a leading U.S. kidney dialysis provider, has announced that it is setting aside $495 million to settle a false claim lawsuit for Medicare fraud in its dialysis clinics. This case, one of the largest False Claims Act settlements, involves allegations that DaVita HealthCare purposely used larger dose vials of Epogen than it knew would be needed for patient dialysis treatments. This resulted in the intentional wasting of medicine dosages in order to fraudulently cause increased payments by Medicare. The qui tam lawsuit was filed in Atlanta and alleged that DaVita’s conduct had been occurring from 2003 through 2010, and involved thousands of instances of fraud and false claims. This qui tam whistleblower case was brought by a doctor and a nurse who worked in DaVita’s dialysis clinics in Georgia.
This case is exactly what the False Claims Act is for. As with almost every qui tam case, this Medicare fraud allegation involved employees realizing that the company they worked for was cheating and they knew they had to do something about it. One of the biggest concerns for employees to come forward and blow the whistle is the fear of retaliation. The False Claims Act offers protection and whistleblower rewards for employees and others who blow the whistle on companies engaging in fraud in government contracts and other federally funded programs. Who will step up to the plate to protect their whistleblower rights when the help is needed most? Only whistleblower law firms who specialize in handling cases in qui tam litigation can