Washington, D.C., partner Jesse Witten authored an article in Inside Counsel titled, “Abbott’s $1.6 Billion Global Settlement Illustrates Government’s Commitment to Health Care Fraud Enforcement.”
In the article, Jesse explores the details surrounding the government’s $1.6 billion health care fraud settlement with Abbott Laboratories. The case centered around the drug Depakote, which Abbott admitted to promoting as a treatment for schizophrenia and dementia despite the drug only being FDA approved to treat epileptic seizures, bipolar mania and migraine headaches.
Jesse notes the penalties Abbott faces as a result of the criminal guilty plea and subsequent settlement of numerous civil cases, including a $500 million criminal penalty, a $561 million payment to the federal government and an additional $239 million payment to several states. Abbott will also be expected to establish measures for preventing future law violations.
According to Jesse, the Abbott settlement is part of a widespread government crack down on health care fraud. “The Abbott settlement is not the first health care fraud settlement to top $1 billion, and it likely will not be the last,” Jesse warns.