NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) - New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo announced today a $24.8 million settlement with Staten Island University Hospital and SIUH Systems, Inc., effectively ending a Medicaid fraud lawsuit that was initiated by a physician who formerly worked at SIUH.

The suit alleged that SIUH presented false claims to Medicaid for reimbursement for in-patient detoxification treatment in a special unit within the hospital for which the company had not obtained a certificate of operation from the state.

The State of New York will receive $14.88 million, or approximately 60 percent, from the settlement of the whistleblower lawsuit.

"Money that is wrongfully kept from the state is money that is wrongfully kept from serving all New Yorkers. The impact is even greater during these times of economic hardship," Cuomo said.

The suit was a result of a joint investigation by Cuomo's Medicaid Fraud Control Unit and the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York. The physician who filed the complaint did so under the state's False Claims Act, legislation that encourages whistleblowing.

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