Pharmacy Owners Agree to Pay $1.1 Million and Abide by 10-Year Federal Healthcare Exclusion to Resolve False Claims Act Liability
PHILADELPHIA, PA – United States Attorney William M. McSwain announced that the owners of E-Z Pharmacy in Philadelphia have agreed to pay $1,100,000 to resolve liability under the False Claims Act.
Dhanyabapa LLC, doing business as E-Z Pharmacy, and Shardaben Patel will jointly pay $1,100,000 to the federal government to resolve allegations that they violated the False Claims Act by billing Medicare for prescription medications that were not actually dispensed during the period from January 1, 2012 to December 31, 2016. These medications include Advair Diskus, Humalog, Novolog, Renvela, and Lidoderm. Dhanyaba LLC and Shardaben Patel also agreed to a ten-year federal healthcare exclusion, which will prohibit them from receiving payments from any federally funded health care insurer such as Medicare for the next decade.
“Taxpayer dollars should be spent on needed medications, not wasted on fraud and abuse,” said U.S. Attorney McSwain. “We appreciate E-Z Pharmacy's willingness to promptly negotiate a resolution in this matter. I also want to thank the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Inspector General for its referral of this matter. Our Office will continue to work proactively with our law enforcement partners to identify and prosecute fraudulent conduct.”
“Pharmacies are responsible for all claims they submit to Medicare,” said Maureen R. Dixon, Special Agent in Charge of the Philadelphia Regional Office of the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Inspector General. “HHS-OIG and the U.S. Attorney’s Office take allegations of health care fraud seriously and will work together to ensure taxpayer dollars are only spent on bona fide medical claims.”
The settled civil claims are allegations only. There has been no determination of civil liability.
This case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General. It was handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Deborah W. Frey, Civil Chief Gregory B. David, and Auditor George Niedzwicki.