This case was one of the first to be due to a violation of a previous agreement on the integrity of the company. Knowing that such a kickback system was clearly illegal, hospitals and Clinica entered into prefabricated contracts that revealed that hospitals were paying Clinica for translation, management, marketing and consulting services. (These services were not the true purpose of payments; therefore, these services were never provided, inferior or doubled for existing services.) Hospital managers continued to conceal the true purpose of their agreements with Clinica by hiding information from internal and external contract verification consultants. Although they knew that their agreements with Clinica were illegal, CIA hospital officials certified that Tenet complied with applicable laws and the CIA. Negotiated comparisons and agreements await district court approval. Tenet HealthSystem Medical Inc. and its subsidiaries (THSM) have entered into a Non-Prosecution Agreement (NPA) with the Department of Criminal Fraud and the U.S. Attorney`s Office of the Northern District of Georgia with respect to the charges in the criminal information. THSM is the parent company of Atlanta Medical Center Inc., North Fulton Medical Center Inc., Spalding Regional Medical Center Inc. and Hilton Head Hospital. THSM is a subsidiary of Tenet Healthcare Corporation. In accordance with the AFN`s provisions, THSM and Tenet will avoid prosecution if, among other things, they cooperate with ongoing government investigations and improve their compliance and ethics programs and internal controls.
Tenet also agreed to maintain an independent compliance monitor to remedy and reduce the risk of another AKS breach by a company that is wholly or partially owned by Tenet. The commitments made by THSM and Tenet under the AFN are three years, but the AFN can be extended by up to one year. Finally, the agreement required the company to report suspicious violations or behaviour on its own. Before the election, then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced a new policy to investigate those responsible for corporate fraud. The «Yates Memo» suggested that large groups could no longer redeem themselves from fraud programs by simply paying a fine. Criminal information also accuses Atlanta Medical Center Inc. and North Fulton Medical Center Inc. of conspiracy to defraud HHS in the management and supervision of Medicare and Medicaid programs, including the implementation of Tenet`s September 2006 Enterprise Integrity Agreement (CIA). Criminal information and civil action allege that many illegal payments took place while Tenet was under the CIA.
The criminal information also accuses that some executives of Atlanta Medical Center Inc., North Fulton Medical Center Inc. and others concealed these illegal payments made by HHS-OIG during the CIA`s pendant, including by erroneously certifying compliance with CIA requirements and by failing to reveal reported events related to the CIA`s illegal relationship.