TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—Attorney General Pam Bondi’s Office today announced a multistate and federal settlement with Olympus America, Inc. resolving allegations of anti-kickback violations. As part of the settlement, Olympus will pay the states and federal government a total of $306 million, plus interest, in civil damages to compensate Medicaid, Medicare and other federal programs for harm suffered as a result of Olympus’ alleged conduct.
The settlement stems from a whistleblower lawsuit, United States et al., ex rel. John Slowik v. Olympus America, Inc., et al., 10-5994, filed in the United States District Court for the District Court of New Jersey. The lawsuit alleges that Olympus, and certain Olympus subsidiaries, paid illegal kickbacks to health care providers. According to allegations, Olympus used improper financial incentives to induce doctors and hospital executives to purchase Olympus-manufactured endoscopes and other surgical equipment, unlawfully increasing sales and to gain market shares.
The improper financial incentives include, but are not limited to, free and no-charge loans and use of equipment such as gastroenterological and surgical endoscopes, endotherapy devices, endoscopic ultrasound systems and medical information systems. This alleged conduct resulted in false claims to Florida Medicaid and other state and federal health care programs.
As part of the settlement, Florida will receive a net share of more than $1.6 million.