Last month Halifax Hospital, in Daytona, Florida, agreed to pay $85 million to settle part of a suit brought by the federal government and a whistleblower (who is an employee of the hospital) for violations of the Stark Law. The part that was settled centered on improperly providing incentives to physicians for referring patients to the hospital. The hospital still faces trial on the rest of the suit: charging Medicare for treatment when there was no medical necessity.
Now the whistleblower’s attorneys want another $7.3 million. Last Saturday they filed a request for that amount to cover attorneys’ fees and expenses. In support of the request, they point out that their efforts have already resulted in recovery of $85 million for taxpayers. The request follows a month of unsuccessful negotiations with hospital attorneys over the attorneys’-fee issue.
The case is U.S. et al. v. Halifax Hospital, Mid. Dist. Fla. No. 6.09-cv-0100.