DaVita HealthCare Partners, a Denver-based company, has agreed to pay up to $495 million to settle a whistleblower lawsuit accusing the company of defrauding the federal Medicare program. This is the third settlement of a whistleblower lawsuit by DaVita since 2012.
Dr. Alon J. Vainer and nurse Daniel D. Barbir, both former employees of DaVita, filed the claim under the False Claims Act in Atlanta in 2011. The two employees noted that DaVita was billing Medicare and Medicaid for perfectly good medication that it threw away. Vainer and Barbir claimed this practice occurred from 2003-2010.
According to the lawsuit, DaVita wasted the drugs Zemplar (vitamin D) and Venofar (an iron supplement). The company would order a 100 mg vial, bill Medicare for all 100 mg, but only give the patient a dosage of 25 mg, for example. The remainder of the medication would be thrown away.
DaVita will pay the government $450 million, and an additional $45 million in fees. Under the False Claims Act, whistleblowers are entitled to 15-30% of the amount recovered, meaning that Vainer and Barbir could receive up to $135 million for their role in bringing the case.
Evans Law Firm, Inc. was not involved with the DaVita Healthcare Partners lawsuit, but does handle whistleblower and qui tam (False Claims Act) lawsuits. If you have a whistleblower claim, please contact Evans Law Firm, Inc. at 415-441-8669 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.