For media inquiries only, contact: Brian J. Gottstein
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org (best contact method)
Attorney general returns another $8.6 million in Medicaid fraud recovery to General Fund
RICHMOND (August 28, 2012) -- Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli announced to state legislators today that Virginia's Medicaid Fraud Control Unit will turn over a check to the General Fund later this month for $8.6 million, which represents Virginia's share of proceeds from a global settlement between pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Virginia, the United States, and other state governments to settle allegations of Medicaid fraud.
The investigation conducted by Virginia, the federal government, and the other states alleged that GSK violated federal and state laws by
making false and misleading representations to health care providers about the drug Avandia's overall safety for diabetic patients;
conducting illegal off-label marketing schemes to promote the sales of Paxil, Wellbutrin, Advair, Lamictal, and Zofran (off-label marketing promotes the use of a drug where that use is not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration);
conducting kickback schemes for these five drugs plus four additional drugs (Imitrex, Lotronex, Flovent, and Valtrex); and
submitting false and inflated "Best Price" data to the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, resulting in underpayment of rebates owed on certain products to the state Medicaid programs.
Virginia, the states, and the federal government alleged that these actions caused false claims for reimbursement to be submitted to government health care programs, including Medicaid.
"When companies defraud Medicaid to enrich their own pockets, they are not only defrauding Virginia's taxpayers, but because annual Medicaid dollars are limited, they are potentially depriving health care from the poorest citizens of the commonwealth," said Cuccinelli.
The global settlement with GSK resolves civil fraud claims arising from four qui tam ("whistleblower") cases filed under the federal False Claims Act and the Virginia Fraud Against Taxpayers Act.
The settlement agreement was reached in June 2012 and made public in July. The settlement check in the amount of $8,600,723.17 will be deposited into the General Fund's Healthcare Account for use by the Virginia Department of Medical Assistance Services for Virginia's Medicaid program.