On December 19, 2017, The DOJ announced its settlement with two physician groups, successfully recouping over $33 million. The settlement resolves the false claims arising from the fraudulent practices of HMA hospitals (Health Care Management Associates) paying kickbacks to the physician groups. The kickbacks induced them to admit patients as “inpatients”, though outpatient care was sufficient. Medicare pays substantially more for inpatient care than outpatient care.
The whistleblowers who brought the lawsuit, Drs. Thomas Mason and Stephen Folstad, will receive $6,222.907. See the Department of Justice’s article here.