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Health Care Fraud

Health care fraud schemes come in many different forms and are carried out by entities throughout the health care industry....

Robert M. Thomas, Jr.

Bob Thomas been practicing law since 1986 and for the last sixteen years has been representing whistleblowers with his friend,...

BU Law Health Care Fraud Seminar Turns From Substance To Practice

September 6, 2016

The fifteen students enrolled in Bob Thomas’s Health Care Fraud and Abuse seminar at Boston University Law School have covered a lot of substantive ground this fall and are now looking forward to hearing a series of outside speakers who offer different perspectives on this dynamic area of the law.

Where We’ve Been

The first eight weeks have covered the nitty gritty of the most important statutes and legal theories: The False Claims Act, the Anti-Kickback Statute, Stark, Off-Label Marketing, Adulteration and Misbranding under the Food Drug and Cosmetic Act, Remedies including Exclusion and Debarment, and the False Claims Act’s Anti-Retaliation provisions.  Throughout the seminar, as the students have covered these areas of law, they’ve been asked to think like practitioners: How would a defense attorney deal with this issue? What would a prosecutor think? Would a whistleblower have a good claim? What would an in-house attorney do?

Where We are Going In the Health Care Fraud and Abuse Seminar

Now they get to dig a little more deeply into these practical aspects. Over the next four weeks, outstanding seminar speakers will present their thoughts on the world of health care fraud enforcement as they see it, each from a unique perspective.

Next week, Gene Hull, the Chief Compliance Officer at Ironwood Pharmaceuticals in Cambridge, MA will lead an on-site presentation of what’s going on at the company, and how he and the General Counsel’s office are structuring compliance initiatives at a young company just rolling out its first product and hiring its first sales force. The students will get a tour of the company while they are there.

In the following three weeks, the students will hear from:

  •  defense lawyers at Boston white shoe firm Ropes & Gray, which has deep experience in this sector, including some high profile trial wins in health care fraud cases;
  • former Assistant U.S. Attorney Shannon Kelley, now in compliance at Boston Scientific but nationally known for her leadership in the ground-breaking Glaxo Smith Kline prosecution; and
  • an actual whistleblower who will recount what it’s like to take the big step into taking on one’s former employer in a multi-billion dollar claim, knowing that the decision is a life-altering moment, one way or another.

It will be a great sequence, and if history is any guide, the speakers will enjoy it just as much as the students!

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