U.S. Attorney’s Office – District of Delaware, February 1, 2021
WILMINGTON, Del. – U.S. Attorney David C. Weiss announced today that Akumin Corporation and Delaware Open MRI Radiology Associates, LLC have agreed to a $749,600.00 settlement with the federal government to resolve allegations of health care fraud arising under the federal False Claims Act. Akumin provides diagnostic medical imaging services at more than 125 locations across seven states including eight locations in Delaware.
Although diagnostic imaging studies are typically performed by technicians, Medicare regulations require that certain procedures be supervised by a physician who is present in the office suite during the procedure. During an investigation of Akumin’s practices at its sites in Delaware and Texas, the government identified over 1,500 instances, most of them between 2015 and 2017, in which either no physician was present for studies that required supervision or Akumin was unable to determine whether a physician was present.
The settlement announced today resolves a lawsuit filed under the whistleblower provision of the False Claims Act. The government’s claims are based on a whistleblower suit filed by a former Akumin employee. A whistleblower suit, or qui tam action under the False Claims Act, is commenced by an individual, known as a “relator,” filing a complaint under seal in the U.S. District Court, and providing a copy of the complaint and other evidence to the local U.S. Attorney. The United States then has an opportunity to investigate the claims. The False Claims Act provides the whistleblower with a share of the government’s recovery.