False Claims Act Settlement: Miami-Based Medical Company To Pay More Than $3 Million
On May 19th, 2022, the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida announced that VirtuOx, Inc.—a health care information technology company with a main office in Coral Springs, FL—will pay $3.15 million as part of a False Claims Act settlement. The company is accused of overbilling Medicare. As the matter was part of the government’s attention through a whistleblower’s qui tam lawsuit, that whistleblower will receive compensation valued at around 20 percent of the total recovery. In this blog post, our Florida Medicare fraud attorneys discuss the allegations raised against the health care company and highlight the whistleblower award.
Allegations: Company Billed Medicare for Services at Improper (Higher) Rate
VirtuOx, Inc. is a health care services company that provides diagnostic tools for Medicare patients and Medicare providers. After an investigation, federal authorities determined that the South Florida health company improperly overbilled Medicare. The alleged overbilling took place between early 2016 and late 2020. The central allegation is that VirtuOx, Inc. billed the federal government (Medicare) for certain diagnostic services as a higher reimbursement rate than was warranted.
More specifically, the False Claim Act settlement is focused on the company’s billing for overnight pulse oximetry. A pulse oximetry is a test that can be used to measure the oxygen level within a person’s blood. The United States Attorney’s Office contends that VirtuOx, Inc. was essentially “double billing” for these services. The company will pay $3.15 million to resolve the False Claims Act violation. Additionally, it will retain an outside, independent billing expert to review claims.
Whistleblower Will Receive $630,000 as Part of Qui Tam Claim
Health care billing fraud remains a serious issue. Medicare and Medicaid lose out on an enormous amount of money each year due to billing fraud. As federal health billing is highly complicated—and not always transparent—it can be difficult for the government to detect and stop billing fraud. The False Claims Act is one of the most effective tools for stopping Medicare billing fraud.
Under the False Claims Act, a private individual with information regarding health billing fraud can file a lawsuit on behalf of the government. This lawsuit is called a qui tam action or qui tam claim. It was filed in the False Claims Act case involving VirtuOx, Inc. As part of the $3.15 million settlement, the whistleblower who initiated the False Claims Act lawsuit will receive an award with 20 percent of the total value of the recovery, or $630,000 in compensation.
Speak to a False Claims Act Whistleblower Lawyer in Florida
At Guttman, Freidin & Celler, our Florida Medicare fraud lawyers are devoted advocates for whistleblower rights. Are you considering filing a qui tam claim under the federal False Claims Act or the Florida False Claims Act? We are here to help. Contact us today for a no cost, fully confidential review and evaluation of your case. Our firm provides nationwide representation to whistleblowers.