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Office of Inspector General Affirms State's False Claims Act in Compliance with Federal Statute

Allows Rhode Island to Receive Maximum from Global Medicaid Settlements

Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin announced today that the Office of the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services affirmed that Rhode Island's False Claims Act, which was amended this past legislative session, is now fully updated reflecting the federal False Claims Act, ensuring the State will maintain its full share from all federal/state global Medicaid settlements. If Rhode Island failed to update the statute to meet federal guidelines; it would have lost incentive funding equaling ten percent of any settlement that was paid back to the State Medicaid Program.

In 2012, the Medicaid Fraud and Control Unit returned approximately $9.9 million to the State's Medicaid Program in settlement agreements with pharmaceutical companies. Had the State not updated the statute to reflect the federal False Claims Act, the loss to the State's Medicaid Program would have been close to one million dollars.

"A critical role of the Medicaid Fraud and Control Unit is to investigate and prosecute those who bilk the state's Medicaid program, no matter if it is a small operator or a global pharmaceutical company. By updating our False Claims Act, we are ensuring Rhode Island's efforts will result in the maximum return from global Medicaid settlements," said Attorney General Kilmartin.

Filed on behalf of Attorney General Kilmartin and sponsored by Senator Michael J. McCaffrey and Representative Joy Hearn, the legislation to update the state's False Claims Act was passed this past legislative session and signed into law by Governor Chafee.

Related links

Department or agency: Department of the Attorney General

Online: http://www.riag.ri.gov/

Release date: 10-30-2013

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