Health

  • April 29, 2016

    Fla. Heart Clinic Fights For Stay Of FCA Suit

    A cardiovascular health care provider facing a False Claims Act suit asked a federal judge to reconsider an order not to apply an automatic bankruptcy stay, saying the court violated its due process rights by not considering a response it was entitled to file.

  • April 29, 2016

    Hollister, Byram To Pay $21M In FCA Kickbacks Case

    Medical product maker Hollister Inc. and medical product supplier Byram Healthcare Centers Inc. will pay a combined $21 million to resolve whistleblower allegations that they violated the False Claims Act by carrying out a yearslong kickback scheme involving catheters and colostomy bag accessories, the U.S. Department of Justice said on Friday.

  • April 29, 2016

    UnitedHealth Says Class Wouldn't Be Efficient In ERISA Suit

    A UnitedHealth Group Inc. unit on Thursday asked a California federal judge not to certify a class of plan holders who say they were improperly denied mental health and substance abuse treatments in violation of ERISA, as each claim would need to be handled on an individual level.

  • April 29, 2016

    LabMD's Data Leak Fraud Claims Far Too Old, Tiversa Says

    Tiversa on Friday stepped up its bid to nix hacking and fraud claims lobbed by LabMD in Pennsylvania federal court, arguing that despite the lab's assertion that Tiversa lied to the Federal Trade Commission, LabMD has known about the alleged misconduct since at least 2010.

  • April 29, 2016

    Deals Rumor Mill: Yahoo, Pfizer, Atlante

    Yahoo Inc. has a short list of 10 bidders, which includes Verizon Communications Inc., for its core Internet business, according to a Reuters report Friday. Most of the offers are cash-only, and also come from big private equity players such as TPG Capital LP. The move to divest the core assets comes after Yahoo scrapped plans to spin off its Alibaba stake in December. Earlier this week, Yahoo announced a truce with activist investor Starboard Value that saw the company partially shake up its board to avoid a proxy fight.

  • April 29, 2016

    Taxation With Representation: Baker & McKenzie, Gibson Dunn

    In this week’s Taxation With Representation, a health care giant acquires a medical device maker with help from Baker & McKenzie and Gibson Dunn tax counsel, while a media stalwart picks up an animation studio and a medical services company is purchased.

  • April 29, 2016

    FDA Greenlights Quest Diagnostics' Zika Test

    Quest Diagnostics on Thursday said it had been granted emergency U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for a test that one of its subsidiaries developed to diagnose the Zika virus, adding that the test should be available for physicians to use in the coming days.

  • April 29, 2016

    Troutman Sanders Nabs Ex-Sheppard Mullin M&A Pro

    Troutman Sanders LLP on Thursday said that it scored a mergers and acquisitions expert from Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP who works closely with clients in the food and beverage and health care sectors to round out its corporate practice in Orange County, California.

  • April 29, 2016

    SD Tribe Sues Indian Health Service Over Hospital Care Cuts

    The Rosebud Sioux Tribe sued the federal government Thursday, saying mismanagement and a lack of funding from the Indian Health Service and other agencies have forced its main hospital to close, violating federal laws and breaching the government’s trust duty to the South Dakota tribe.

  • April 29, 2016

    Texas Law Firm Says Ex-Client Can't Show Malpractice

    Texas firm Burt Barr & Associates LLP asked a federal judge on Friday to permanently dismiss a former client’s malpractice suit accusing the firm of failing to take the necessary steps for her to collect on a $3 million sexual harassment suit judgment, saying she has failed to show the ability to collect.

  • April 29, 2016

    Hospital Hit With EEOC Suit For Requiring Flu Vaccines

    The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is suing a North Carolina hospital in federal court on behalf of employees who say they were given the choice between being terminated or violating their religious beliefs by receiving a flu shot.

  • April 29, 2016

    6 Ways To Be A Go-To Firm For HIPAA Compliance

    Surging penalties and looming audits mean business is booming for attorneys specializing in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, but firms need to elevate their profiles and cultivate wide-ranging expertise to fully capitalize on the opportunity. Here, top privacy pros share tips on becoming a go-to firm for HIPAA compliance.

  • April 29, 2016

    FDA To Mull Mandatory Opioid Education For Prescribers

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration will soon consider whether to make opioid education for prescribers mandatory — it’s currently voluntary — amid other possible modifications to the agency's plan for evaluating and mitigating the risks associated with prescribing opioid painkillers.

  • April 28, 2016

    Jury Awards $8M After Chicago Hospital 'Code Blue' Failure

    A Chicago jury awarded $8 million on Wednesday to the son of a woman who died after being anesthetized without an anesthesiologist present and without procedures in place for response to such “code blue” events, according to documents provided by the plaintiffs.

  • April 28, 2016

    Split 9th Circ. OKs Steeper Sentences For Medical Suppliers

    Medical equipment suppliers who fraudulently overbill Medicare can be given longer sentences based on their positions of trust, a split Ninth Circuit ruled Thursday, saying a California couple convicted of $1.6 million worth of False Claims Act violations took advantage of a government honor system.

  • April 28, 2016

    Judge Won't Reconsider Rejecting Cancer Suit Settlement

    A Florida federal judge said Thursday he would not reconsider his recent decision denying approval of a settlement agreement a cancer victim's family reached with Laboratory Corp. of America, in a case in which they previously won a $4.4 million judgment over a botched test.

  • April 28, 2016

    Pharmacies Say Express Scripts Conspiracy Suit Has Legs

    Express Scripts’ bid to escape an antitrust suit brought by compounding pharmacies who say it conspired with other pharmacy benefit managers to push them out of the market was little more than “self-serving fiction,” the compounders said in Missouri federal court Wednesday.

  • April 28, 2016

    American Hospice Gets OK On $9M Ch. 11 Asset Sales

    Bankrupt end-of-life care provider American Hospice Management Holdings LLC received approval for the sale of its operations in six states on Thursday, after an auction saw competitive bidding for parts of the company.

  • April 28, 2016

    Ex-EMS Instructor Wants Attys' Fees After Sex Bias Verdict

    A registered nurse formerly employed by the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio urged a Texas federal judge Wednesday to enter judgment adding nearly $84,000 in attorneys' fees to a jury's months-old sex discrimination verdict for $115,000.

  • April 28, 2016

    FCA Whistleblower Slams Hospice's Bid To Block Witnesses

    A False Claims Act whistleblower alleging Vista Hospice Care Inc. enticed fake referrals to boost enrollment in its program urged a Texas federal court Thursday to let two whistleblowers from another suit testify, saying their financial stake in the current case's outcome was legitimate.

Expert Analysis

  • OPINION: Engaging The Media May Help Your Client

    Liz Mair

    While I am confident that the decisions in Windsor and Obergefell were made on the basis of the dictates of the Constitution, I am also confident that the communications efforts undertaken gave the justices additional comfort to make the right call, and ensured that these decisions were not treated as a Roe v. Wade redux, says Liz Mair, former online communications director for the Republican National Committee and president of Mair Strategies.

  • The Changing Landscape Of Health Care Data Breaches

    Lynn Sessions

    Although employee action or mistake continues to be a leading cause of health care data breaches, health care is being affected by phishing, hacking and malware attacks just like any other industry. Experience shows that health care may even be targeted more and more for these cyberattacks, says Lynn Sessions of BakerHostetler.

  • State Control Of Hospital Merger Review May Be A Good Idea

    Emily Chow

    In West Virginia, the Federal Trade Commission filed an administrative complaint to prevent the merger of two hospitals — just three months after the state attorney general announced his approval. Although West Virginia’s subsequent legislative acrobatics to secure state-action-exemption protection for certain hospital mergers are novel, to hospitals and other states, West Virginia might be on to something, say Emily Chow and Matth... (continued)

  • Aetna V. BASM: A Health Care War Over Costs And Contracts

    Carol K. Lucas

    The jury's verdict in Aetna Life Insurance v. Bay Area Surgical Management should not be read as a death knell for the health care industry’s out-of-network model. However, it represents a significant battle in an ongoing war between insurers trying to control costs and out-of-network providers who argue they cannot contract on reasonable terms, says Carol Lucas at Buchalter Nemer.

  • Dentons: A New Kind Of Network?

    MarkACohen.jpg

    Dentons is two different law firm networks in one. So even if the Swiss verein structure should eventually fail and Dentons is forced to operate as a network of independent law firms, it could still be a significant market force, says Mark A. Cohen, a recovering civil trial lawyer and the founder of Legal Mosaic LLC.

  • How New Fla. Health Care Laws May Create More Confusion

    Walter J. Taché

    While Florida's newly enacted Transparency in Health Care bill imposes important changes that will impact many entities involved in the health care system, it also leaves various issues to be defined by several state agencies, which could create new complications for those within the industry, say Walter Taché and Magda Rodriguez at Carlton Fields Jorden Burt PA.

  • Risk Of Future Misconduct Will Guide HHS Investigations

    John T. Bentivoglio

    While the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' new guidance on the use of its so-called permissive exclusion authority should provide more transparency and predictability, many of its provisions focus on the risk of future misconduct, which run counter to requests for positive incentives for the development and implementation of effective compliance programs, say attorneys at Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP.

  • Gov't Hiring Private Attys Is Proper As A Matter Of Law

    Linda Singer

    Various corporate defendants have vigorously fought, lost and refought challenges to the government’s ability to hire outside counsel on a contingent-fee basis. These failed efforts show why the use of outside counsel by government agencies, rather than being wrong, is entirely right, says Linda Singer, former District of Columbia attorney general now with Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC.

  • Are CGL Data Breach Cases Already Meaningless?

    Jeffrey O. Davis

    Perhaps, in light of the Fourth Circuit ruling in Travelers v. Portal Healthcare Solutions — the first federal circuit court decision in which "publication" was found to include a data breach — policyholders can claim that the tide is turning their way in these cases, says Jeffrey Davis at Quarles & Brady LLP.

  • Focus On High-Risk Info For Ill. Data Breach Enforcement

    Carolyn V. Metnick

    The Illinois attorney general has clarified that the state's data breach enforcement spotlight will focus on cases involving highly sensitive information. In order to position themselves for an appropriate response to a breach, health care providers need to understand the overlap and variances between relevant federal and state law and take action now to be ready, say Carolyn Metnick and Jason Betke at Akerman LLP.