CBS Evening News spotlights Medicare scam exposed by Phillips & Cohen whistleblower case

Aug. 8, 2008 -- CBS News reporter Sharyl Attkisson examined widespread Medicare billing fraud involving a type of back surgery known as kyphoplasty in her weekly "Follow the Money" segment tonight.

In her report, "Whistle blown on Medicare scam," Attkisson interviewed the two whistleblowers Phillips & Cohen represented in a qui tam lawsuit against Kyphon Inc., now owned by Medtronic Spine LLC. Medtronic paid the federal government $75 million to settle the qui tam case.

The spinal medical device company's sales and pricing strategy was designed to increase its profits by defrauding Medicare. Attkisson noted that ". . . Kyphoplasty was good for patients and corporate executives, but it was taxpayers left feeling the pain."