Search Site

Epic Systems Accused of Healthcare Fraud in Whistleblower Lawsuit

A lawsuit filed against Epic Systems, a digital health care records company based in Verona, Wisconsin, alleges the company systematically overbilled the government for Medicare and Medicaid.

The lawsuit was initially filed under the False Claims Act (FCA) in 2015 by Geraldine Petrowski, a former employee for a health care company in North Carolina. Under the False Claims Act, all lawsuits filed by whistleblowers are sealed until the Department of Justice can investigate the allegations. In this case, the allegations were kept quiet for more than two years until the federal court unsealed the documents.

Details of the complaint

Epic develops medical records software that enables hospitals to select how they will itemize bills for anesthesia. According to the lawsuit, the software allows healthcare providers to essentially double their reimbursements for a single anesthesia service.

Petrowski worked as a liaison between her healthcare organization, WakeMed, and Epic. She shared her discovery with Epic, and the company removed it for WakeMed. However, according to her complaint, the feature remains in place in other health systems used across the country.

There are different ways to measure how long a patient remains under anesthesia. Some health care providers charge anesthesia using “units” of 15 minutes, while others charge based on total minutes under anesthesia. According to the complaint, the feature implemented by Epic allows hospitals to add units to minutes, which results in double-charging payers for those treatments.

Petrowski claims this is an unlawful method of billing and has resulted in hundreds of millions of dollars of fraudulent Medicare and Medicaid billing.

Any whistleblowers are allowed to file lawsuits on behalf of the federal government and can receive a portion of any funds recovered in the case. To learn more about how to proceed with a False Claims Act case, contact an experienced Dallas attorney at Kardell Law Group.

Awards & Honors
Our Office
  • Dallas Office
    4514 Cole Ave
    Dallas, Texas 75205
    Phone: 214-306-8045
    Fax: 469-729-9926
As Seen In
In his new book, "Standing Up to China: How a Whistleblower Risked Everything for His Country," former client & Author, Ashley Yablon, quotes Attorney Steve Kardell about Whistelblower Law.
  • "Steve Kardell was terrific in representing me in some very adversarial discussions with Citigroup and also later represented me in my testimony before the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission."  -Richard Bowen, Citigroup Whistleblower

  • "Incredible knowledge of employee related concerns and equally brilliant knowledge of health care regulations, standards of practice. I would recommend this firm to anyone."  -V.B.

  • "Reaching out to Steve Kardell was the best decision I made. His ability to provide immediate insight and direction was very powerful, and a huge relief during a very stressful time period. For anyone struggling with a whistleblower situation, I would highly recommend at least speaking with Steve. After a 10 minute call with him, I had a better understanding of what I was dealing with. Even better, he gave me some immediate hope. In the end Steve did a better job than I thought was possible. Steve was able to get in contact with people in my organization, that I didn’t have access to. Because of his years of experience, he already has contacts in many organizations in Dallas. The entire situation was handled peacefully. I was impressed by his ability to “keep the peace”–rather than creating a battle with the organization. The reason I didn’t reach out to a lawyer initially, was because I thought it would mean an immediate end to any hope of a positive relationship with the company. Steve was able to address my concerns, and in the end I was able to continue to work for them."  -KS

  • "Never thought my career would end like it did after 30 years of service. I was part of the first round of the so called reduction of force. I asked myself how can I be part of this with 30 years of seniority. How did they pick these 90 plus employees? Now, the culture of this organization made you question every decision they made. It wasn’t what you knew it’s was a culture of who you know. Nonetheless, I did not accept their severance package. I immediately starting looking for an attorney who would take on my case. After the initial call to Steve I had hope again. He was open and honest about everything and reassured me he would do his best for me, and he did. I had an awesome outcome. Thanks Steve you’re the best."  -S.S.