A Nashville man will receive more than $28.5 million as part of a larger settlement in a whistleblower suit brought against now-defunct Florida-based Arriva Medical and medical device company Alere Inc. for Medicare fraud.
Arriva, a Medicare mail-order diabetic testing supplier that shuttered in 2017 after the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services blocked reimbursement to the company for suspected fraud, and its parent company Alere have agreed to pay $160 million to resolve the allegations against them. According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Tennessee, the deal is the largest single False Claims Act settlement on record in its jurisdiction, and the largest in the country for kickbacks involving durable medical equipment.
The suit was filed in 2013 by Gregory Goodman, who at the time was working at an Arriva call center in Antioch. Two months later, the federal government intervened on the claim, alleging the DME company and its parent were improperly distributing glucometers and billing Medicare and frequently waiving copayments and failing to collect payments. Also, in 2016, the Medicare program pulled Arriva’s Medicare supplier number after submitting claims on behalf of deceased beneficiaries, according to court filings.
Former U.S. Attorney Jerry Martin, now of Barrett Johnston Martin & Garrison, represented Goodman throughout the case. In a press release about the settlement, he said:
“This has been a true David versus Goliath story. Mr. Goodman was not a high-ranking executive; he worked at an Arriva call center. But he saw evidence of a major kickback scheme unfolding, and the False Claims Act gave him a tool to bring that scheme to the Government’s attention, and to ultimately help the Government recover $160 million in taxpayer money.”