Whistleblower Claims Under the False Claims Act in Healthcare

Effective Compliance and Response Strategies to Minimize Risk

Qui Tam Laws Now in Effect in 20 States

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A


Conducted on Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Program Materials

Description

False Claims Act (FCA) cases are the fastest growing area of federal litigation. In the arena of healthcare fraud alone, the DOJ obtained $1.5 billion in settlements and judgments during fiscal year 2007 while pursuing FCA violations. Most of this amount arose out of cases involving whistleblowers.

The Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 created financial incentives for states that pass qui tam whistleblower laws. Since then, 20 states have enacted laws with whistleblower provisions and the volume of whistleblower cases is likely to surge.

FCA and state qui tam violations can result in criminal sanctions and huge civil damages and penalties. Counsel for healthcare providers must thus be well versed in this area of the law to develop an effective compliance program and to respond to potential "whistleblower" complaints.

Listen as our panel — attorneys experienced in prosecuting and defending healthcare fraud cases — reviews the requirements of the Deficit Reduction Act, offers compliance strategies to reduce the risk of FCA claims, and provides best practices for addressing employee whistleblowers and complaints.

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Outline

  1. Aftermath of the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005
    1. Compliance directives
    2. Compliance training
    3. State False Claims Acts
    4. Aggressive qui tam relator bar
  2. Compliance strategies to reduce risk exposure
    1. Compliance and ethics programs
    2. Compliance assessments
    3. Compliance education
    4. Employee certifications
    5. Compliance culture
    6. Focused audits and monitoring
  3. Addressing employee whistleblowers and complaints
    1. Responding to internal reports
    2. Internal investigations
    3. Dealing with disgruntled employees
    4. No retaliation

Benefits

The panel reviewed these and other key questions: 

  • Will employee education on the False Claims Act required by the Deficit Reduction Act create a new generation of whistleblower cases?
  • What are the key elements of an effective compliance strategy to avoid FCA or qui tam violations?
  • How can providers manage their risk exposure to whistleblower cases?

Faculty

Patrick S. Coffey
Patrick S. Coffey

Partner
Locke Lord Bissell & Liddell

He concentrates his practice in the representation of healthcare-related entities in complex business litigation,...  |  Read More

Linda A. Wawzenski
Linda A. Wawzenski
Assistant U.S. Attorney and Deputy Chief of Civil Division
U.S. Attorney's Office

She supervises the office's civil fraud work and coordinates parallel criminal cases. The majority of her cases involve...  |  Read More

Chris J. Mollet
Chris J. Mollet
Associate University Counsel
University of Illinois at Chicago

He is responsible for healthcare transactions for the university's Medical Center, medical service plan and health...  |  Read More