Wheaton Community Hospital, the City of Wheaton (MN), and Dr. Stanley Gallagher have agreed to pay the United States $846,461.00 to settle allegations that their hospital admission practices violated the False Claims Act. In particular, the suit against Wheaton Community Hospital, the City, and Dr. Gallagher alleged that they admitted some patients and kept others admitted to acute care when doing so was not medically necessary. The three defendants then allegedly billed Medicare for the cost of the unnecessary admissions.
The whistleblower who brought the allegations to light formerly practiced at Wheaton Community Hospital with Dr. Gallagher. As a result of his efforts in exposing the alleged fraud, the whistleblower will receive $203,150.00 of the overall settlement.
The Department of Justice’s press release can be found at: http://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/2010/January/10-civ-001.html