New Jersey-based C.R. Bard, Inc. (“Bard”), a manufacturer and marketer of medical products, has agreed to settle a qui tam action for $48.26 million. According to the Justice Department, the suit relates to Bard’s sales of brachytherapy seeds (“seeds”) used to treat prostate cancer. Brachytherapy seeds are small radioactive pellets that are implanted in the body at the site of a tumor to help shrink the tumor.
A whistleblower suit was filed under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act by Julie Darity, a former Bard manager for brachytherapy contracts. The Complaint alleged that, between 1998 to 2006, Bard paid illegal kickbacks to customers and physicians to induce them to purchase Bard’s seeds for use in prostate cancer patients. It was also alleged that the medical providers then submitted bills to Medicare and/or Medicaid for the seeds, which the government claims were false because of the illegal remuneration the providers had received from Bard.
Bard has agreed to pay $48.26 million to resolve the allegations. The whistleblower will receive $10,134,600 of the settlement amount as her reward under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act.