As part of the largest Medicaid fraud case ever led by a state, Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli announced the sentencing of global health care company Abbott Laboratories Inc. in the United States District Court in Abingdon, Va., today [10/5]. The court approved the $1.5 billion settlement reached on May 7, 2012, among Abbott, Virginia, the United States government, and 48 other states and the District of Columbia, in which Abbott pled guilty to a criminal charge and admitted civil liability for the company’s unlawful promotion of the prescription drug Depakote for uses not approved as safe and effective by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The attorney general’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) was the lead investigative agency in the case, partnering with the prosecutors and civil attorneys from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Virginia. This was the largest Medicaid fraud recovery in U.S. history resulting from a state-led investigation, with the Virginia MFCU spending more than four years on the investigation, traveling to 26 states to conduct interviews and sifting through more than one million records looking for evidence.
When it pled guilty in May, Abbott agreed to pay $1.5 billion to resolve its criminal and civil liability pertaining to government health care programs that were defrauded based on reimbursements paid for Depakote due to Abbott’s illegal marketing practices. The settlement that was approved today includes a criminal fine and forfeiture totaling $700 million and civil settlements with the federal government and the states totaling $800 million.
The civil settlement includes $270 million for the federal government’s share of the Medicaid program; $239 million for the states’ share of the Medicaid program; and $291 million for Medicare and other federal programs. Abbott will also pay a $500 million fine to the federal government, $198.5 million in criminal asset forfeiture penalties, and $1.5 million to Virginia MFCU to cover investigative costs. Virginia’s share of the Medicaid civil settlement is $4.2 million.
Abbott must also agree to the terms of a Corporate Integrity Agreement with the Office of the Inspector General for the Department of Health and Human Services.
Full Article and Source:
Abbot Labs to Pay $1.5 Billion in Virginia Led Case
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