A civil settlement by a New Jersey teaching hospital and its faculty physician group marked the end of a long-running federal investigation known as Physicians at Teaching Hospitals, or PATH. The University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and University Physician Associates, without admitting wrongdoing, agreed to pay a total of $1.4 million to resolve false-billing allegations. PATH, begun in the early 1990s as a joint investigation by HHS' inspector general's office and the Justice Department, targeted claims for services by faculty physicians that actually were provided by residents. In the case of UMDNJ and its physician practice, the providers lacked the documents to substantiate some claims from 1995 and 1996. The PATH investigation was one of the most successful fraud probes to date in terms of recoveries; the U.S. recovered $134.6 million from 22 hospitals, including UMDNJ, in PATH settlements and $94 million from 16 hospitals facing PATH-like allegations. -- by Mark Taylor
N.J. case is last in national teaching-physician probe
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