PillsOn December 22, 2020, the Department of Justice’s (“DOJ”) Civil Division, Consumer Protection Branch, and five U.S. Attorneys’ Offices announced a groundbreaking civil enforcement action against Walmart Inc. (“Walmart”).  The 160-page complaint alleges that the world’s largest company (by revenue) and the operator of over 5,000 in-store pharmacies contributed to the national opioid crisis by

nursing homeSeveral months into the COVID-19 pandemic that has gripped the United States, it is well established that hotbeds for spread of the disease are nursing homes and other assisted living facilities. Tight quarters holding vulnerable populations is precisely the kind of environment in which the novel coronavirus thrives. That fact is made all the worse

On September 30, 2020, the Department of Justice (“DOJ”) announced its latest health care fraud take down, which was its first since the pandemic hit in March 2020. DOJ charged 345 doctors, medical professionals, owners/operators, and others with criminal health care fraud schemes implicating more than $6 billion in total alleged loss amount. Arriving six

Department of JusticeRecoveries and settlements in False Claims Act (FCA) cases by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) have accelerated in recent months and appear to be poised to rise dramatically as DOJ follows spending related to the pandemic recovery and federal stimulus efforts and bring additional resources to bear. Thus far in FY 2020 (which closes

courthouse and moneyOn September 4, 2020, the Eighth Circuit affirmed Reuben Goodwin’s conviction for his role in a Medicare/Medicaid kickback scheme. Goodwin’s conviction was supported by evidence of his knowledge of the conspiracy and willful participation in the conspiracy. The Eighth Circuit’s decision serves to remind everyone the risks a conspiracy charge pose to even a potentially

FraudOn March 20, 2020, the Attorney General ordered the Department of Justice (“DOJ”) to prioritize oversight, investigation, and prosecution of misuse of federal funds distributed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.[1] Now, almost six months later, the DOJ continues to examine instances of “COVID-19 Fraud” for possible civil or criminal prosecution. The DOJ’s prioritization

Coronavirus CARES ActVarious federal agencies – particularly the FBI and the DOJ – have been vocal in announcing efforts to ferret out fraud and other criminal activity arising out of the COVID-19 pandemic. As described in prior blog posts on this site (here and here), the government focused on pandemic profiteering, such as price gouging

nursing homeWith the COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the U.S., nursing homes have been ground zero for infections and deaths. According to new data released by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (“CMS”), there were 29,457 U.S. nursing home deaths from COVID-19 through the first week of June 2020.

With COVID-19, the criminal enforcement landscape for nursing

HydroxychloroquineOn June 15, 2020, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) withdrew its emergency use authorization (EUA) to use hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19. According to the FDA, there is “no reason to believe” the drug is effective against the coronavirus, and its use increased the risk of serious side effects, such as heart problems. The FDA’s