$4 Million Settlement Reached in Medicare Fraud Lawsuit Against Tampa Dermatologist Practice
August 28, 2018. Tampa, Fla. – Today the United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Florida announced that a settlement was reached in a qui tam whistleblower suit under the False Claims Act captioned United States of America and the State of Florida ex rel. T.A.S., M.D. v. Robert A. Norman, D.O., et al., No. 8:15-cv-1506-T-23AEP. The whistleblower’s suit, filed in federal court in Tampa, alleged that Dermatology Healthcare, LLC; Robert A. Norman, D.O, P.A.; Robert A. Norman, D.O.; and Carol Norman (collectively, Dermatology Healthcare) falsely billed government healthcare programs, including Medicare and Medicaid, for complex radiation treatments.
Prior to filing this False Claims Act suit, the whistleblower investigated Dermatology Healthcare’s suspicious billing practices. The investigation revealed a number of important facts related to the actual radiation services being provided. Specifically, the company’s website depicted an image of a linear accelerator, which is a complex and expensive radiation device commonly located on the campuses of major hospitals. An image of a linear accelerator appears below:
Further, a review of the relevant billing records revealed that the government was being billed for complex radiation treatments typically delivered by a linear accelerator.
However, the complaint alleged that Dr. Norman did not own a linear accelerator, nor did he use a linear accelerator when administering radiation to his patients. Instead, the complaint alleged that he and/or his staff used a superficial radiation machine such as the mobile device pictured below:
The whistleblower who brought this alleged fraud to the attention of the government authorities, is represented by Daniel Miller of the law firm of Berger Montague, P.C., and by Lawrence Klitzman of the Klitzman Law Group, PLLC. The claims resolved by the settlement are allegations only, and there has been no determination of liability.
For nearly 35 years, Klitzman Law Group, PLLC has successfully handled complex commercial litigation cases, including whistleblower and false claims act cases involving health care fraud, consumer class actions against banks and telecommunications companies, and disputes between business owners. The firm also represents physicians and high net worth individuals on corporate, tax and estate planning related matters.
For more than 15 years, the Berger Montague’s Whistleblower, Qui Tam & False Claims Act Practice Group has represented whistleblowers in matters involving healthcare fraud, defense contracting fraud, IRS fraud, securities fraud, and commodities fraud, helping to return more than $3 billion to federal and state governments. In return, whistleblower clients retaining Berger Montague to represent them in state and federal courts have received more than $500 million in rewards. Berger Montague’s time-tested approach in Whistleblower/Qui Tam representation involves cultivating close, productive attorney-client relationships with the maximum degree of confidentiality for our clients. Our goal is for each of our clients’ experience as a whistleblower working with our firm and with the government to be positive and fulfilling.
Lawrence S. Klitzman
Klitzman Law Group, PLLC