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false claims act 578 articles

Whistleblower fired for reporting asbestos in condo complex to be compensated

A Columbia, South Carolina, real estate management company has agreed to pay a former employee $45,000 and take other measures to ensure federal whistleblower provisions aren’t violated in the future, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced. The agreement settles a complaint brought against CMM Realty Inc. and its owner for allegedly terminating a maintenance worker after he reported asbestos control violations to state and federal regulatory agencies. According to OSHA, in May 2009 the employee was working at CMM’s Briargate Condominiums in Columbia when he encountered problems involving asbestos and asbestos exposure. Contact with asbestos fibers can ... Read More

Complaints accuse Merck of mumps vaccine fraud

An Alabama health care provider filed a lawsuit against Merck Monday, June 25, a week after a 2010 whistleblower lawsuit against the drug manufacturer was unsealed, revealing allegations that for a decade, Merck may have knowingly made and marketed a mumps vaccine that was “far less effective” than it told federal regulators. According to the Courthouse News, Chathom Primary Care in Chathom, Alabama, filed a federal antitrust class action against Merck after learning about a False Claims Act complaint brought against the drug maker by two former Merck virologists familiar with the company’s vaccine development. In that complaint, Stephen Krahling ... Read More

Whistleblowers to get cut of record fines in health care fraud case

Drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline will pay a combined total of $3 billion in civil and criminal fines and plead guilty to pushing two of its popular drugs for unapproved purposes and withholding important safety information about a third drug from U.S. regulators. A group of whistleblowers instrumental to the case, which is considered to be the largest health care fraud settlement in U.S. history, will receive a percentage of the fines for their role in aiding the federal government’s investigation and helping to recover taxpayer money. At the center of the case was GSK’s illegal marketing of the drug Paxil to treat ... Read More

Harvard Medical School to stand trial for Alzheimer’s research fraud

Harvard Medical School will face trial for conducting research fraud after a U.S. Appeals Court overturned the decision of a lower court Tuesday and ordered the case to proceed. The claim, which involves one of the largest Alzheimer’s disease research grants ever awarded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), was brought to court by a whistleblower lawsuit filed by Dr. Keith Jones, chief statistician for the NIH grant. Dr. Jones blew the whistle on the Alzheimer’s study and its principal researchers after discovering that key measurements used to demonstrate the study’s reliability had been secretly modified to suit a ... Read More

Montgomery man faces harsh backlash after blowing whistle on his international employer

MONTGOMERY, ALA–Blowing the whistle on corporate fraud and other wrongdoing would be a no-brainer for most people, but the truth is workers have a lot to consider when faced with the prospect of calling out their employers. The threat of losing one’s job always looms large, but other forms of backlash that were not apparent at first may emerge after the whistle is blown, turning the fight into a real-life David and Goliath at best or a living nightmare in more extreme cases. For whistleblowers facing backlash, lawyers can become their closest ally. Few real-life examples illustrate this more vividly ... Read More

Lawsuit accuses Takeda of hiding bladder cancer Actos risks

A Kentucky man is suing Actos manufacturer Takeda Pharmaceuticals, claiming the popular diabetes drug caused him to develop bladder cancer. The man and his wife filed the lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court, naming Japan-based Takeda and its subsidiary companies as defendants, as well as U.S.-based Eli Lilly, which partnered with Takeda to market Actos in the United States and Canada. In addition to bladder cancer and resulting illnesses, the plaintiffs assert Actos caused other bodily injuries, diminished enjoyment of life, economic losses, and other damages. According to the lawsuit, the link between Actos and bladder cancer was no secret ... Read More

Unnecessary surgeries were performed for profit and promotion, whistleblower lawsuit alleges

A whistleblower lawsuit filed against The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s (UPMC) Hamot campus under the False Claims Act accuses the hospital and five cardiologists of defrauding Medicare and a number of patients by participating in a kickback scheme from 2001 to 2005 that involved performing unneeded heart operations. According to Pennsylvania’s Erie Times-News, “The suit claims the doctors, part of Medicor Associates Inc., performed unnecessary surgical procedures to make more money for themselves and Hamot and to promote the development of a cardiovascular surgery program at Hamot.” The lawsuit also contends that “Hamot overbilled Medicare in exchange for referrals ... Read More

Whistleblower receives $21 million for exposing health care fraud

A former senior financial analyst for a Florida-based health plan provider will receive nearly $21 million for his role in exposing his employer’s fraudulent business practices, which involved double billing Medicare and Medicaid. According to the Tampa Bay Times, Sean Hellein, who worked for WellCare Health Plans in Tampa, secretly recorded company executives in 2006 discussing ways to double bill the government health programs. As an administer of managed-care plans for 2.6 million Medicare and Medicaid patients, WellCare is required to refund a percentage of unspent funds. Mr. Hellein’s information led to an FBI raid on WellCare’s Tampa headquarters in ... Read More