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In the June issue of Hospital Peer Review, the lead article relayed information about the impending federal Patient Safety Act of 1997, of which whistleblower protection is an important feature.
Three whistleblowers, or "relators," recently filed a suit against SmithKline Beecham Clinical Laboratories in Philadelphia for allegedly defrauding Medicare, Medicaid, and other health programs that resulted in a $325 million settlement with the federal government.
Whistleblowers can receive 15% to 30% of the recovered money. Close to 150 health-care related cases were filed in 1996.