Jeffrey Dickstein is a whistleblower attorney and partner at Phillips & Cohen in our Miami, Florida, office.
He brings more than 30 years of healthcare litigation experience – most recently as an Assistant US Attorney for the Department of Justice in Miami, Florida – to his work for whistleblowers in Medicare and Medicaid fraud cases.
His successful cases for the firm’s whistleblower clients include a lawsuit against UPMC and James Luketich MD that settled for $8.5 million. The government intervened in the case, which alleged that UPMC had violated the False Claims Act by billing federal healthcare programs in violation of federal medical necessity and teaching physician requirements based on Dr. Luketich regularly performing as many as three complex surgical procedures at the same time. The government’s complaint alleged that this practice resulted in extended anesthesia time for patients and potential serious health consequences. As part of the resolution of the case, UPMC and Dr. Luketich also agreed to monitoring of billing practices by an independent auditor.
Dickstein also helped secure a $50 million settlement of a qui tam lawsuit against Wheeling Hospital. The case alleged that the West Virginia Hospital violated kickback and physician self-referral (Stark) laws as part of a scheme to boost its revenues and market share.
He also represents whistleblowers in cases involving other types of fraud. A New Orleans university paid $12 million to settle its liability in a qui tam case that alleged certain institutions defrauded the Federal Emergency Management Agency by submitting fraudulent information to obtain disaster relief funds.
Phillips & Cohen is working with DOJ, which intervened in the case, to pursue litigation against another defendant, multinational firm AECOM.
As a leading federal healthcare lawyer with the US Attorney’s Office in the Southern District of Florida, Mr. Dickstein investigated and prosecuted many Medicare fraud cases against hospitals, health systems and doctors based on qui tam lawsuits filed by whistleblowers.
Mr. Dickstein was awarded the Department of Justice Special Commendation Award in 2015 for “particularly outstanding services” as an Assistant US Attorney.
His healthcare fraud cases were noteworthy not only because they recovered significant financial losses for the Medicare and Medicaid programs but also because they stopped medically unnecessary procedures and prevented significant patient harm.
A 'true example of the best and the brightest attracted to public service.'
One of his recent “qui tam” cases resulted in more than $250 million in settlements with nearly 500 hospitals in 43 states. That case concerned whistleblower allegations that hundreds of hospitals implanted cardiac devices, known as implantable cardioverter defibrillators, too soon after heart attacks or heart surgery.
Highlighting his exemplary work on that case, a nonprofit whistleblowers’ organization, Taxpayers Against Fraud Education Fund, awarded him its “Public-Private Partnership Award” for 2016, recognizing the highly successful collaboration between the Department of Justice and the whistleblower team.
Lawdragon recognized Mr. Dickstein’s work on behalf of whistleblowers by including him on its national list of the “500 Leading Plaintiff Financial Lawyers” for 2019, 2020, 2021.
Mr. Dickstein also settled one of the largest False Claims Act cases brought against an individual physician, who allegedly subjected patients to unnecessary CT scans and other imaging studies. In a separate Medicare fraud case, he prosecuted a neurosurgeon who allegedly removed healthy spinal discs in order to obtain larger Medicare reimbursements.
Another one of his Medicare fraud cases involved a hospital performing invasive procedures – including biopsies and colonoscopies – that were medically unnecessary and were alleged to have been performed on nursing home patients solely to increase the hospital’s Medicare payments.
Mr. Dickstein has been described as a “true example of the best and the brightest attracted to public service.”
He is a frequent speaker on healthcare fraud topics at conferences for physicians, hospitals, health systems, compliance officers and other healthcare professionals.
Before joining the Justice Department, Mr. Dickstein had a successful practice representing patients in medical malpractice cases, both as a partner in a law firm he co-founded and as a solo practitioner. He received his law degree from the University of Miami School of Law and is admitted to the bar in Florida.
- “UPMC Doc Can’t Get Surgery-Suit Whistleblower Sanctioned,” Law 360, March 7, 2023
- Hospital, top surgeon to pay $8.5 mln in whistleblower suit over simultaneous surgeries,” Reuters, February 27, 2023
- “Archdiocese of New Orleans to Pay $1 Million to Settle FEMA Fraud Claims,” The New York Times, November 16, 2021.
- “Wheeling Hospital agrees to $50 million settlement with DOJ,” The Intelligencer, September 10, 2020.
- “W.Va. Hospital pays $50M to end false claims, kickback suit,” Law360, September 10, 2020.
- “Justice Department joins whistleblower lawsuit against AECOM,” Construction Dive, June 5, 2020.
- “How DOJ Got 500-plus hospitals to settle over cardiac implants,” Modern Healthcare, May 28, 2016.
- “500 Leading Plaintiff Financial Lawyers” – Lawdragon, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022
- Taxpayers Against Fraud Education Fund – Public-Private Partnership Award, 2016
- Department of Justice – Special Commendation Award, 2015
- “Reporting from the Trenches – A False Claims Act Enforcement 2022 Recap and Predictions for 2023” – American Health Law Association’s Physicians and Hospitals Law Institute 2023, Jan. 31- Feb. 1, 2023
- “False Claims Act and Medical Necessity” – Health Care Compliance Association’s 26th Annual Compliance Institute, March 29, 2022
- “False Claims Act Enforcement from the Frontlines” – Physicians and Hospitals Law Institute – Feb. 3-4, 2022
- “False Claims Act Enforcement” – Physicians and Hospitals Law Institute – February 2021
- “Medical Necessity and the False Claims Act” – 2019 HCCA Healthcare Enforcement Compliance Conference – November 2019
- “Avoid Creating the Whistleblower: Best Practices to Handle Complex Employee Situations” – 2019 Healthcare Litigation, Compliance & Investigations Forum – November 2019
- “Enforcement and Compliance: Quality of Care and Medical Necessity” – ABA’s 28th Annual National Institute on Health Care Fraud – May 2018
- Workshop for Qui Tam/Relators and Other Plaintiffs Counsel – ABA’s 28th Annual National Institute on Health Care Fraud – May 2018
- “Protecting Your Investments: Avoiding Potential Financial Catastrophes” – 2018 Physician Practice Management & ASC Symposium – April 2018
- “Compliance & Quality of Care” – HCCA Board Audit Committee Compliance Conference – February 2018
- “Different Sides/Different Perspectives – Review of Topical False Claims Act Healthcare Cases” – CSHA Fall Seminar – November 2017
- “Medical Necessity and the False Claims Act: Investigating, Proving, and
Defending FCA Case” – HCCA Healthcare Enforcement Compliance Institute – November 2017
- False Claims Act 101: Its Purpose, How It Works in Practice, and Pitfalls to Avoid – American Association for Justice Annual Conference – July 2017
- Whistleblowers: Who, What and Why – Florida Hospital Association Annual Corporate Compliance Education Retreat – June 2017
- Whistleblowers: Opposing Views from Relator’s Counsel and the Defense – HCCA Web Conference – May 2017
- Hot Topics In Healthcare Fraud – AAPC HealthCon 2017 – May 2017
- If You Could See What We Saw: Observations of Former DOJ Health Care Fraud Prosecutors – National Alliance of Medical Auditing Specialists Auditing & Compliance Conference – December 2016
- Patient Safety & Medical Peer Review – HCCA Annual Regional Conference, Nashville – November 2016
- Case Study: Anatomy of a Complex FCA Case – CLE International 3rd Annual Qui Tam Conference: A Close Look at Healthcare Fraud & More – November 2016
- Specialty Workshop for Qui Tam/Relators and other Plaintiffs Counsel – National Institute on Health Care Fraud – May 2016
- Quality of Care, Medical Necessity, and Enforcement and Compliance – National Institute on Health Care Fraud – May 2016
- Value Based Payments and Compliance: Responding to the Government’s Focus on Quality of Care and Medical Necessity – HCCA Compliance Institute – April 2016
- Anatomy of a False Claims Act Case – AAPC Annual Conference – April 2016