eClinicalWorks (ECW), one of the largest electronic medical records software companies in the U.S., will pay $155 million to resolve a whistleblower-initiated False Claims Act lawsuit alleging the company misrepresented the capabilities of its software. ECW falsely received Electronic Health Records certification and incentives by “hardcoding” only the 16 drug codes required for testing. In addition, ECW’s software did not accurately record user actions in an audit log, did not reliably record diagnostic imaging orders, did not perform drug interaction checks, and did not satisfy basic data portability requirements so that the patient data could move from their software system to that of other vendors. The settlement agreement holds ECW and three of its founders (Chief Executive Officer Girish Navani, Chief Medical Officer Rajesh Dharampuriya, M.D., and Chief Operating Officer Mahesh Navani) jointly and severally liable, and the company entered into a five-year Corporate Integrity Agreement requiring the company to retain an Independent Software Quality Oversight Organization to assess ECW’s software quality control systems and provide written semi-annual reports to HHS OIG.
The whistleblower in this instance was Brendan Delaney, a software technician who was formerly employed by the New York City Division of Health Care Access and Improvement. As part of the settlement, Mr. Delaney will receive approximately $30 million.