Search Site
Menu

Hospital in West Virginia Reaches $50 Million Settlement in Whistleblower Case

Wheeling Hospital in West Virginia recently agreed to pay $50 million to the federal government to settle a whistleblower case alleging improper kickbacks and payments to doctors that were directed by hospital management.

The settlement concluded a case that dates back to 2017, filed by former hospital executive vice president Louis Longo. Longo will receive $10 million for his role in the case.

Case background

In his lawsuit, Longo claimed the hospital’s payments to physicians violated federal law, as millions of dollars in excess compensation were based on the value or number of patient referrals. There were some physicians who were alleged to have received more than $1 million a year due to the illegal kickback system.

According to information from the Department of Justice, the illegal actions occurred from 2007 to 2020 under the direction of R&V Associates Ltd. And former Chief Executive Officer Ronald Violi.

These types of arrangements are illegal because such kickbacks can improperly influence the type or amount of healthcare that is provided to patients. Physicians should not be financially incentivized to deliver certain types of care, or care to certain types of patients.

The settlement also comes at a time of financial turbulence for the hospital, which announced some significant staff reductions in July, and which posted an $11 million loss in the 2019 fiscal year before losses of more than $18 million this year as of September.

If you are aware of any form of healthcare fraud, it is important you take action to report what you know. Healthcare fraud has an impact of billions of dollars each year. For more information about how to proceed, contact an experienced whistleblower lawyer at Kardell Law Group.

Honors
Our Office
  • Dallas Office
    4514 Cole Ave
    #600
    Dallas, Texas 75205
    Phone: 214-306-8045
    Fax: 469-729-9926
Testimonials
  • "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.

FOLLOW US
Facebook Twitter Linkedin RSS Feed JD Supra