The United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts recently announced that three former district managers of the pharmaceutical firm Warner Chilcott have been sentenced for violating the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and committing healthcare fraud.
The allegations include that the district managers directed certain sales representatives to fill out prior authorizations for the osteoporosis drug Atelvia®, even if physicians refused to do so. In order to complete the prior authorizations, the representatives accessed the protected health information of patients, which is a violation of HIPAA Rules.
As a result of the scheme, the district managers received large bonuses.
One district manager pleaded guilty to violating HIPAA Rules and wrongfully disclosing PHI. He faced a maximum prison term of 10 years with three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000, but was sentenced to one year of probation and a fine of $10,000.
A second district manager was sentenced to serve eight months of home confinement and to forfeit $21,500 in payments.
The third district manager became the top grossing district manager after implementing the scheme and received a $100,000 bonus and a promotion. He was sentenced to serve 8 months of home confinement, pay a $10,000 fine, and forfeit $28,237.