The Health Law Blog

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Supreme Court Weighs Physician Intent in “Pill Mill” Physician Criminal Prosecutions Under the Controlled Substances Act

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law Physicians and other healthcare professionals usually have broad scope to prescribe most drugs, including potentially dangerous ones. However, over the past decade, many limits, often imposed arbitrarily through criminal prosecutions or drastic administrative sanctions, have been used to impose limits. The question was recently put before the U.S. Supreme Court as to how far a physician's judgment can ...

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4/25/2022 Comments(0)

Former Florida Radiology Group Employee Files Class Action, Alleges Stock Value Plan Scheme

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On April 15, 2022, a participant in a Florida-based radiology chain's employee stock plan filed a federal lawsuit in Florida, accusing company executives of scheming to drain the plan’s value for their personal benefit. The former employee of Advanced Diagnostic Group ADG filed a proposed class-action suit claiming company executives improperly diverted money away from the employee stock plan to ...

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4/24/2022 Comments(0)

State Nursing Boards Continue to Delay Licenses Across the U.S. As COVID-19 Pandemic Continues

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law Staffing shortages at hospitals across the U.S. are worsening helped along by state boards and other licensing authorities taking months to process nursing licenses, a recent NPR survey claims. As a result, thousands of new nurses who want to help during the COVID-19 pandemic are reportedly getting sidelined by state bureaucratic red tape. Now, it's resulted in a considerable backlog in nurses waiting ...

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4/21/2022 Comments(0)

Psychiatric Practice and Owner Pay $310,000 to Resolve Allegations They Employed a Physician on OIG's LEIE

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On February 23, 2022, a psychiatric practice and its owner agreed to pay $310,874 to resolve allegations they improperly hired and employed a physician who was excluded from federal healthcare programs. The physician who was hired was on the OIG's exclusion list, the "List of Excluded Individuals and Entities" LEIE . As a result, the government took the position that claims for services the physician p...

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4/21/2022 Comments(0)

Ten Defendants in Florida Indicted For Role in $67 Million Health Care Fraud Scheme Involving Genetic Testing

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On February 28, 2022, ten 10 Florida residents were charged in an indictment in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida for their alleged roles in a $67 million health care fraud, wire fraud, kickback, and money laundering scheme. Federal prosecutors allege that the individuals billed Medicare for bogus genetic tests and durable medical equipment. The Alleged Scheme. The federal in...

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4/11/2022 Comments(0)

Helpful Tips to Avoid Healthcare Fraud Prosecutions

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law Physicians who are approached by non-physicians seeking to entice them into business ventures that make money quickly, should be very leery. If the business venture offers good financial compensation for little or no work, RUN! Most often those involved in criminal enterprises are just seeking a physician they can sucker into a situation where they can use his/her Medicare identification number and nam...

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4/11/2022 Comments(0)

Coronavirus Pandemic Provider Relief Fund Expected To Run Out of Money If Congress Doesn't Act Soon

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law In 2020, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services HHS created the "Provider Relief Fund" PRF to help support healthcare providers in the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic. The federal program has served as a lifeline to frontline healthcare workers who’ve experienced revenue losses and increased demand for their services during the pandemic. To date, it has allocated more than $178 bil...

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4/4/2022 Comments(0)

Governor of Mississippi Signs Medical Marijuana Legalization Bill Into Law

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On February 2, 2022, the Gov. of Mississippi signed the Mississippi Medical Cannabis Act legalizing medical marijuana in the state. The law permits the use of medical cannabis to treat certain debilitating medical conditions, including cancer, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, muscular dystrophy, HIV/AIDS, hepatitis, ALS, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, sickle-cell anemi...

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3/30/2022 Comments(0)

Attorneys Who Negotiated Multi-Million Dollar UnitedHealth Settlement Ask Court For $3.35 Million Fee Award

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law In October 2021, attorneys who had acted as the class counsel in litigation suing UnitedHealth Group over mental health reimbursement policies asked a New York federal court to approve a $3.35 million fee award. If approved, it would be an award of attorney's fees in addition to the $10 million the insurer agreed to pay to settle their case. According to the memorandum of law filed with the court, the ...

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3/23/2022 Comments(0)

Ophthalmologist Gets Eight Years for COVID-19 PPP Loan Fraud and Multi-Million Dollar Improper Billing Scheme

By George F. Indest III, J.D., M.P.A., LL.M., Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Health Law On March , 2022, a New York ophthalmologist was sentenced to 96 months in prison for fraudulently obtaining two government-guaranteed small business loans and for a seven-year fraudulent healthcare billing scheme, the Justice Department announced. According to the indictment, the former eye doctor was charged with fraudulently obtaining government-guaranteed small business loans under the Paycheck Prot...

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3/14/2022 Comments(0)