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Jan 27, 2014 by |

Health Care Industry the Target in Whistleblower Lawsuits

ATTORNEY NEWSLETTER

The United States Department of Justice has released some information regarding a recent round of whistleblower lawsuits. One of the lawsuits involves allegations regarding Health Management Associates practices.  The Justice Department has decided to intervene in a False Claims Act lawsuit brought against Health Management Associates by two former employees.  It is alleged that the employees were terminated from their employment because they refused to coerce doctors to admit more patients to meet Health Management Associates guidelines.  California whistleblower and securities attorneys say that many whistleblower lawsuits target the health care industry.  San Francisco whistleblower attorneys agree.

The lawsuit against Health Management Associates was filed on July 15, 2011.  The case was unsealed less than two weeks ago.  The plaintiffs in the case alleged that Health Management Associates executives planned and put into practice company-wide practices that would pressure emergency room doctors to admit more patients.  According to court documents, some of the procedures included setting targeted emergency room admissions rates for the purpose of raising admissions, requiring staff to order diagnostic tests on patients regardless of whether or not the tests were needed, using a system to track every admission rate for each physician, and conditioning the continued employment of workers on increasing emergency room admissions.  California whistleblower and securities attorneys remind the public that the health care industry has a reputation for the number of false claims lawsuits filed against it.

Other allegations in the lawsuit claim that Health Management Associates threatened to terminate CEO’s that did not agree to follow the new procedures put in place to increase hospital admissions, paying bonuses to doctors who did follow the new procedures, instructing doctors to keep running tests until they could find a reason to admit a patients, and requiring staff to conduct daily meetings with emergency room staff on missed admissions.  Health Management Associates did not comment on the litigation, but did say that it is continuing to cooperate with the Department of Justice with respect to ongoing legal matters.  California whistleblower and securities attorneys remind the public to be on the lookout for fraud in the health care industry.

Evans Law Firm, Inc. handles whistleblower/false claims, consumer fraud class actions, insurance and banking fraud, consumer product liability, elder abuse, and personal injury cases.  If you think that you have witnessed or are the victim of financial fraud by an insurance company, bank or individual then, contact Evans Law Firm, Inc. at (415) 441-8669 for a free and confidential consultation, or email info@evanslaw.com.

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