CME Pharmaceutical Fraud

While Pharma’s compliance with anti-kickback laws has drastically improved the prevalence of pharmaceutical fraud, and while the days of phony grants and phony honorariums, etc. have for the most part, come to an end, whistleblowers will still be coming forward.

False Information Disseminated by Pharma, not Independent CME Providers

Inappropriate tactics still exist and are taking on different forms. One of the tactics increasing in use is the dissemination of “scientific and educational” literature. In the past a legitimate expense, they can be a tool for improper off-label marketing if they are designed and carried out under the control of a manufacturer’s influence and bias. Neither the presentations nor the literature are truly independent or non-promotional industry-supported educational activities. Typical patterns of activity are:

  • Absolute control of content and selection of presenters/materials.
  • Titles of the presentation/literature almost never fairly and accurately represent the scope of the presentation/literature.
  • Mailing lists for distribution of literature, or announcements for presentations are always generated by the sales/marketing department, not the “independent” CME company.
  • If there is a presentation, the sales representatives are present, and have an active role in distributing literature.

REAL PEOPLE making real change Meet Some of our Heroes

Kathleen Hawkins

Dignity Health
$37 million

Kathleen Hawkins, RN MSN, had been employed by Defendant, Catholic Healthcare West (CHW) for approximately 6 years when she decided she had had enough of trying to change the hospital system from within.

CHW, a California not-for-profit corporation that operated hospitals in California, Arizona, and Nevada, was at the time the eighth largest hospital system in the nation and the largest not-for-profit hospital provider in California.

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Joe Strom

Johnson & Johnson
$184 Million

Joe Strom contacted us in 2005. We were very grateful that he did. We immediately formed an all-star legal team and a process to stop a very harmful pharmaceutical marketing strategy. It was this process we set into motion that ultimately returned hundreds of millions of dollars to the U.S. Treasury, and a portion of that, very well-deserved, into Joe’s bank account.

Joe told us a very troubling story about the off-label promotion of a pharmaceutical drug for patients who already suffered from chronic heart failure.

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Bruce A. Moilan Sr.

$27 Million

Bruce Moilan was a seasoned hospital systems expert by the time he contacted our Firm. At the time he decided to file his qui tam lawsuit, he was employed by South Texas Health System as a System Director for Materials Management. In this position, he oversaw $24 million in annual purchases of supplies and equipment and helped determine budget, reduction and cost analysis throughout the contract bidding and negotiations process. His job was to insure proper implementation for purchasing, receiving and management of inventory, for McAllen Hospitals, L.P.

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Description
Description
Description

“I collaborated with Nolan, Auerbach and White on a broad variety of cases where whistleblowers stepped forward to disclose tactics employed by large companies to influence physicians' medical decision-making in patient care. They provide ample resources to not only optimize their client cases, but in doing so consistently leverage best medical evidence to further patient safety and resource utilization.”

— Fred Polsky M.D., Former Medical Director, CMS Zone 7 Integrity Contractor

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