Arizona Heart Hospital Settles with the HHS and the OIG

Arizona Heart Hospital agreed to settle with the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Office of Inspector General (OIG) for $675,000 for 10 instances of filing false claims with Medicare. According to the OIG and HHS, between July 2005 and March 2007, physicians at Arizona Heart Hospital submitted claims for carotid artery stenting procedures, a procedure not covered by Medicare. The physicians allegedly billed Medicare under a comparable billing code.

Dr. Edward Diethrich, the medical director of Arizona Heart Hospital, contends that the purpose of the stent procedure “did not coincide with the protocol or labeling for the stent,” being used for a purpose not approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Diethrich further claimed that because there are so few of these atypical cases, it is not economically justifiable for a stent manufacturer to obtain FDA approval.

For more information, please contact Abby Pendleton, Esq., Jessica L. Gustafson, Esq., at (248) 996-8510 or visit The HLP website.