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New Jersey cardiologists pay $3.6 for false claims settlement, whistleblower awarded $650,000

Garden State Cardiovascular Specialists P.C., a cardiology practice with several locations in New Jersey under the name NJ MedCare/NJ Heart, agreed to pay more than $3.6 million to resolve allegations that it falsely billed federal health care programs for tests that weren’t medically necessary.

The allegations resolved by the settlement were raised in a lawsuit filed under the qui tam, or whistleblower provisions of the False Claims Act. The FCA allows private citizens with knowledge of fraud to bring civil actions on behalf of the government and to share in any recovery. 

The whistleblower, Cheryl Mazurek, will receive more than $648,000 as part of the settlement, the DOJ said.

Garden State and its principals, Jasjit Walia M.D. and Preet Randhawa M.D., allegedly submitted claims to Medicare for various cardiology diagnostic tests and procedures, including stress tests, cardiac catheterizations, and external counterpulsation, that weren’t medically necessary.

The DOJ said the claims resolved by the settlement “are allegations only, and there has been no determination of liability.”

The qui tam law suit was United States ex rel. Cheryl Mazurek v. Garden State Cardiovascular Specialists, P.C. et al., Civil Action No. 10-4734 (D.N.J.).

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Richard L. Cassin is the publisher and editor of the FCPA Blog. He can be contacted here.

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