Cardinal Health, Dublin, Ohio, and Jackson Memorial Hospital, Miami, resolved a legal dispute, with the board of the public hospital agreeing to pay the distributor $8 million to resolve outstanding bills. The hospital is part of 1,764-bed Jackson Health System, owned by the Public Health Trust of Miami-Dade County. Cardinal sued Jackson Memorial in U.S. District Court in Miami in January when the hospital refused to pay some $14.7 million billed by the distributor. The hospital withheld the money after the trust's inspector general alleged that Cardinal had overbilled Jackson Memorial under a pharmacy management contract. Cardinal denied the allegations, but the hospital terminated the contract. As part of the settlement, the hospital will receive $1.9 million through Cardinal from a third-party distributor, and it will not pay interest on the bills. Jackson Memorial said it will continue to buy drugs through Cardinal but will exercise more oversight over their dealings. In recommending the settlement to the hospital board, the head of the Public Health Trust said it was important to stop taking resources away from the organization's central mission -- caring for county residents. Cardinal spokesman Jim Mazzola said the company was pleased with the settlement. "Funds were owed, and we filed suit only after we were unable to resolve that," Mazzola said. "We believe this is a fair resolution for both parties." -- by Mark Taylor
Distributor, Miami hospital settle billing dispute
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