NuVasive Agrees to Pay $13.8M Over FCA Allegations

May 1, 2015

NuVasive announced Wednesday that it will pay nearly $14 million to settle a U.S. government investigation.

The tentative settlement with HHS’ Office of the Inspector General will see NuVasive paying $13.8 million, including fees, to resolve the concerns, which involved possible false or improper claims submitted to Medicare and Medicaid. The company does not anticipate a corporate integrity agreement as part of the settlement.

In July 2013, HHS subpoenaed NuVasive for claims records from January 2007 to April 2013, with the request focused on interbody quantitative and biologic, Osteocel bone graft and thermograph devices.

The move comes several weeks after NuVasive announced a new CEO, Greg Lucier. He replaces former CEO and founder Alex Lukianov, who was asked to step down over noncompliance with expense reimbursement and personnel policies.

Spokeswoman Stacy Roughan says the staff change is unrelated to the settlement.

The agreement should be a boon for the company, says Leerink Research analyst Richard Newitter, who notes the ongoing investigation lowered stock prices and distracted company management.

He expects the cost of the settlement to be relatively minor as compared to NuVasive’s $400 million cash on hand.

The company will release its first-quarter earnings on May 4. — Elizabeth Orr