J&J unit to pay $9.75M to settle kickback suit

Johnson & Johnson

A Johnson & Johnson medical device subsidiary admitted to providing thousands of dollars in equipment as kickbacks to an orthopedic surgeon as part of a $9.75 million settlement reached with the Department of Justice (DOJ).

Sales agents of the subsidiary, DePuy Synthes, gave a Massachusetts-based orthopedist free spinal surgery equipment from at least July 2013 through February 2018 for use overseas in an effort to induce him to select DePuy equipment for his surgeries performed in the United States, the DOJ said in a press release Friday.

The federal anti-kickback statute prohibits companies and individuals from receiving or giving money, equipment, or other benefits to create more referrals or billings to Medicare, the federal health program that provides care to seniors; Medicaid, the federal-state program for low-income residents; and other government programs.

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