HARRISBURG, Pa. (Legal Newsline) - Pennsylvania Attorney General Linda Kelly announced on Tuesday that her Medicaid Fraud Control Section has recovered more than $250,000 for the state as part of a national settlement.
The settlement was reached with Mariner Health Care Inc. and Sava Senior Care Administrative Services LLC, two nursing home chains operating out of Atlanta. The agreement resolves allegations that the defendants solicited and received kickback payments from Omnicare Inc., the largest pharmacy that specializes in dispensing drugs to long-term care facilities.
The settlement is based on a complaint that was filed in March 2009 that alleged that Omnicare, Mariner and Sava conspired to arrange for Omnicare to pay $50 million in exchange for agreements to continue using Omnicare's pharmacy services for a 15-year period.
A total of $14 million in civil damages will be paid by Sava and Mariner to several states and the federal government to compensate Medicaid and Medicare programs. Of this total, the commonwealth will receive more than $253,000. The state has previously recovered more than $1 million in restitution from Omnicare.
As part of the agreement, Mariner has entered into a corporate integrity agreement with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General that requires Mariner to implement reviews and procedures to avoid this type of conduct and to closely monitor Mariner's future practices.
A team formed by the National Association of Medicaid Fraud Control Units conducted settlement negotiations with the defendants on behalf of the participating states, including representatives from Texas, Massachusetts, California, Illinois and Ohio.