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Analysis

DOJ Levels False Claims, Kickback Allegations Against a South Dakota Neurosurgeon

By John Commins  
   November 19, 2019

DOJ last month resolved related civil complaints against Sanford Health, which agreed to pay $20.2 million. 

A South Dakota neurosurgeon has been named in a federal whistleblower complaint alleging that he paid himself hundreds of thousands of dollars in kickbacks by using medical devices distributed by two companies that he owns, the Department of Justice said.

The government’s complaint alleging violations of the False Claims Act and the Anti-kickback statute, claiming that Wilson Asfora, MD, of Sioux Falls, and his two companies – Medical Designs LLC, and Sicage LLC Medical Designs.

"Despite receiving numerous warnings that he was performing medically unnecessary procedures with the devices in which he had a financial interest, Asfora allegedly continued to perform such procedures while personally profiting from his use of devices sold by Medical Designs and Sicage," DOJ said

DOJ last month resolved related civil complaints against Sanford Health, which agreed to pay $20.2 million.

"The Department of Justice will seek to hold accountable physicians and medical device companies that receive or pay illegal kickbacks in any form," said Assistant Attorney General Jody Hunt of DOJ's Civil Division. "Improper inducements have no place in our federal healthcare system where medical decisions should be based on the healthcare needs of patients and not on a physician’s personal financial interest."

DOJ filed its complaint in a whistleblower lawsuit pending in the U.S. District Court for the District of South Dakota.  

“The Department of Justice will seek to hold accountable physicians and medical device companies that receive or pay illegal kickbacks in any form.”

John Commins is a content specialist and online news editor for HealthLeaders, a Simplify Compliance brand.

Photo credit: Mark Van Scyoc / Shutterstock.com


KEY TAKEAWAYS

Wilson Asfora, MD, allegedly performed unnecessary procedures that used spinal devices sold by two companies he owns.

DOJ filed its complaint in a whistleblower lawsuit pending in the U.S. District Court for the District of South Dakota. 


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