California pharmacist agrees to pay nearly $4 million to settle fraud allegations

by Ben Vernia | March 31st, 2023

On March 30, the Department of Justice announced that a Huntington Beach, California pharmacist has agreed to pay nearly $4 million to settle civil allegations that she submitted claims for drugs she never dispensed to patients. According to DOJ’s press release:

Gisele Nguyen, a pharmacist residing in Huntington Beach, California, has agreed to pay $3,933,993 to resolve allegations that she fraudulently billed the Medicare Program for medications that were never dispensed.

The United States alleged that, from at least Jan. 1, 2014, through Dec. 31, 2018, Nguyen, by and through the operation of Gisele Nguyen, Inc., doing business as Natico Pharmacy, which was located in Garden Grove, California, fraudulently submitted claims to Part D of the Medicare Program for prescription medications that were never dispensed to beneficiaries. According to the United States, inventory records showed that Natico Pharmacy did not purchase enough of these medications from wholesaler distributors to fill all of the prescriptions billed to Medicare.

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The case apparently arose from a government investigation, rather than from a whistleblower’s lawsuit.

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