OIG Settles Kickback Case with Physician-Owned Company for Leveraging Patient Referrals to Obtain Contract Business from Hospitals

On 8 July 2010 the HHS Office of Inspector General (OIG) announced settlement of a civil monetary penalty and Medicare exclusion case with United Shockwave Services, LLC, United Prostate Centers, LLC, and United Urology Centers, LLC, a group of related physician-owned companies. The United companies collectively agreed to pay $7,359,500 to settle, under the civil monetary penalty and exclusion provisions of the OIG's authority, allegations that their conduct violated the federal healthcare programs antikickback law and the Medicare prohibition on physician self-referral, the so-called "Stark" law. OIG described the conduct that it believed violated these laws as "leverag[ing] patient referrals to obtain contract business from hospitals."

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