DOJ boasts $2.6B in healthcare fraud settlements, judgments in 2019

The Department of Justice (DOJ) received $2.6 billion in recoveries involving healthcare fraud and false claims in fiscal 2019, officials announced. 

The recoveries involved all sectors of the industry including drug and medical device manufacturers, managed care providers, hospitals, pharmacies, hospice organizations, laboratories and physicians. It is the tenth consecutive year the department's civil healthcare fraud settlements and judgments have exceeded $2 billion.

“The significant number of settlements and judgments obtained over the past year demonstrate the high priority this administration places on deterring fraud against the government and ensuring that citizens’ tax dollars are well spent,” said Assistant Attorney General Joseph Hunt in a statement. “The continued success of the department’s False Claims Act enforcement efforts are a testament to the tireless efforts of the civil servants who investigate, litigate, and try these important cases as well as to the fortitude of whistleblowers who report fraud.”

Whistleblowers filed 633 qui tam suits in fiscal year 2019, and this past year the department recovered over $2.1 billion in these and earlier filed suits. During the same period, the government paid out $265 million to whistleblowers in successful recovery cases. 

The total amount of recoveries from healthcare fraud rose to $62 billion since the False Claims Act was strengthened by Congress in 1986.