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ResMed To Pay $37.5 Mln To Settle Kickback Allegations

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Sleep Apnea equipment maker ResMed Corp. has agreed to pay more than $37.5 million to resolve allegations that it payed kickbacks for the sale of equipment for Sleep Apnea and other disorders, the Department of Justice or DoJ said in a statement.

The San Diego, California- based manufacturer of durable medical equipment or DME allegedly led to false claims related to the sale of these products to DME suppliers, sleep labs and other healthcare providers.

The DoJ accused that ResMed provided free goods and services to companies in order to sell more medical equipment bought by taxpayers.

ResMed also allegedly provided free telephone call center services and other free patient outreach services to DME companies. The company also provided sleep labs with free and below-cost positive airway pressure masks and diagnostic machines, as well as free installation of these machines.

The DoJ noted that Anti-Kickback Statute prohibits the knowing and willful payment of any remuneration to induce the referral of services or items that are paid for by a federal healthcare program, such as Medicare, Medicaid or TRICARE.

Under its agreement with the Department of Health and Human Services, ResMed will implement additional controls around its product pricing and sales. It will also conduct internal and external monitoring of its arrangements with referral sources.

The agreement resolves five lawsuits originally brought by whistleblowers, who will collectively receive around $6.2 million share of the settlement.

Last week, the DoJ had said it recovered more than $3 billion from businesses who have committed fraud and false claims in the fiscal year ending September 30, 2019.

The lion's share of that money, $2.6 billion, was related to healthcare industry, including drug and medical device manufacturers, hospitals, and physicians.

American specialty pharmaceutical company Insys Therapeutics paid $195 million to settle kickback allegations, while Reckitt Benckiser Group plc paid a total of $1.4 billion to resolve criminal and civil liability related to opioid addiction treatment drug Suboxone.

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