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Hussain Talks DOJ Focus on Telehealth Enforcement with Law360

June 21, 2024

White Collar Defense & Investigations partner Murad Hussain was quoted in the Law360 article, “Adderall Indictment Shows DOJ Focus On Telehealth Drugs,” which discusses the recent arrests and indictment of two digital health executives accused of conspiring to illegally distribute Adderall, a medication used to treat ADHD, online.

Hussain explained to Law360 that the case illustrates federal prosecutors’ novel application of the Controlled Substances Act. “Even before the pandemic, DOJ was spending lots of resources building two seemingly separate investigation infrastructures: one focused on telemedicine fraud and kickbacks involving medical devices or laboratory testing, and one focused on violations of the Controlled Substances Act involving allegedly improper opioid prescriptions. Now DOJ is combining these two well-oiled enforcement machines in a new way, by charging violations of the Controlled Substances Act in the telehealth context, based on allegedly improper prescriptions of non-opioids,” he told the publication.

“If you're a digital health company, this case tells you two things,” Hussain continued. “First, DOJ's use of the Controlled Substances Act against healthcare providers isn't just about opioids. Second, online healthcare delivery platforms need to stay focused on compliance with anti-kickback and anti-fraud guardrails, so that healthcare providers have genuine treatment relationships with their patients, and compensation structures and technological processes don't incentivize unnecessary treatment,” he said.

Hussain added that Congress and regulators have focused on the nationwide shortage of ADHD medication, which “affects so many families across the country and across the political divide,” so it is unsurprising that policy concerns about drug diversion may have driven DOJ’s investigation.

Read the full article (subscription required).