On June 9, 2015, the Office of Inspector General (OIG) released a fraud alert warning physicians that they could face liability under the Anti-Kickback Statute unless their compensation arrangements, such as medical director agreements, reflect fair market value for bona fide services the physicians actually provide. Only two days after releasing its latest fraud alert, a deputy director from the OIG announced that it will be hiring additional attorneys to look into taking more administrative actions against physicians in their individual capacity. In a related development, the Department of Justice recently reached a record settlement with a skilled nursing facility for improperly paying physicians as medical directors. This confirms that while the OIG is broadening its enforcement to individual physicians, the entities are not off the hook.
This alert summarizes the government’s actions and provides tips for physicians to protect themselves.