OIG Releases Advisory Opinion No. 08-10: Contractual Joint Ventures Scrutinized

On August 26, 2008, the Office of the Inspector General (“OIG”) of the Department of Health and Human Services (“DHHS”) published Advisory Opinion 08-10, in response to a physician group’s proposal to provide space, equipment, and personnel to other physician practices through block leases for the provision of intensity-modulated radiation therapy (“IMRT”). The OIG determined that such an arrangement could potentially generate prohibited remuneration under the Anti-kickback Statute (“AKS”) and could constitute grounds for the imposition of exclusion or civil monetary penalty sanctions, pursuant to sections 1128(b)(7) and 1128A(a)(7), respectively. This guidance could have far-reaching implications for similar joint venture arrangements.

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