Sweet Dreams Nursing Anesthesia company to pay $1.1 million to Government for paying kickbacks to surgery centers

Sweet Dreams Nurse Anesthesia will pay the United States $1,034,416 and the State of Georgia $12,078.79 to settle claims that it payed unlawful kickbacks to ambulatory surgery Centers in the form of free anesthesia drugs in return for an exclusive contract for Sweet Dreams to provide anesthesia services in Georgia. Uncle Sam said they did this with the intent to induce referrals of Medicare and Medicaid patients.

A second Government assertions involved an agreement of an affiliate of Sweet Dreams to fund the construction of an ASC in Marietta, Georgia, in exchange for contracts for Sweet Dreams’ selection as the exclusive anesthesia provider at that facility and a number of other podiatry-based ASCs affiliated with the Marietta ASC.

This investigation began with a lawsuit filed by Adam Nauss under the whistleblower provisions of the False Claims Act and the False Medicaid Claims Act, which allow private citizens to bring civil actions on behalf of the Government and share in any recovery obtained. The case is captioned United States and State of Georgia ex rel. Adam Nauss v. Sweet Dreams Nurse Anesthesia, et al., 5:14-CV-330. Mr. Nauss will receive a share of the settlement payment pursuant to the whistleblower provisions.

Jeffrey Newman represents whistleblowers, but not those in this case.