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Chicago Hospital to Pay More Than $1.5 Million to Resolve Medicare False Claims Act Allegations
Date:3/9/2010

WASHINGTON, March 9 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Rush University Medical Center has agreed to pay $1,547,200 plus interest to resolve allegations that the facility violated the False Claims Act, the Justice Department announced today. Rush is alleged to have submitted false claims to Medicare during the period 2000 through 2007 by entering into certain leasing arrangements for office space with two individual physicians and three physician practice groups that violated the Stark Law.

The Stark Law prohibits a hospital from profiting from patient referrals made by a physician with whom the hospital has an improper financial arrangement. A leasing arrangement is improper under the Stark Law absent a written lease, signed by the parties, that specifies the premises covered by the lease. Leasing arrangements must also be commercially reasonable and consistent with "fair market value" for the premises. The Stark Law is intended to ensure that a physician's medical judgment is not compromised by improper financial incentives and are based solely on the best interests of the patient.


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SOURCE U.S. Department of Justice
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