Washington, D.C., partner Jesse Witten was quoted in Modern Healthcare in an article titled, “WakeMed's Impact; Tough Penalty has Prosecutors Avoiding Similar Cases.”
The article discusses a recent case in Raleigh, North Carolina, where a federal judge concluded that forcing WakeMed Health & Hospitals to go to trial for a felony count of making material false statements to Medicare for medically unnecessary cardiac hospitalization could force the closure of a 628-bed medical center.
Jesse, a partner in the firm's Commercial Litigation Practice Group, commented on how the consequences of a criminal conviction of a hospital can deter prosecutions. A hospital criminally convicted of Medicare fraud would automatically be excluded from Medicare, under the law, an outcome that could be harmful to the community where the hospital is located.
In a move more common in the pharmaceutical industry and among large U.S. corporations in general, U.S. District Judge Terrence Boyle granted prosecutors' request to let WakeMed enter a deferred-prosecution agreement that will erase the felony charge after two years of successful compliance with the law.
To read the entire article, click the link below.