A website offers users the ability to search for physicians and other health care providers who have paid a fee to be included in the database. The website generates personalized results using a proprietary algorithim. The user can book an appointment with the provider directly through the website.
No fee is charged to the user. However, the providers pay to be listed in the database and pay when a user books an appointment. Providers can also purchase advertisments which are displayed to the users along with the search results.
OIG concluded that:
- although the Arrangement would generate prohibited remuneration under the Federal anti-kickback statute if the requisite intent were present, OIG would not impose administrative sanctions on Requestor in connection with the Arrangement under sections 1128A(a)(7) or 1128(b)(7) of the Act, as those sections relate to the commission of acts described in the Federal anti-kickback statute; and
- although the Arrangement could generate prohibited remuneration under the Beneficiary Inducements CMP, OIG would not impose administrative sanctions on Requestor in connection with the Arrangement under the Beneficiary Inducements CMP or section 1128(b)(7) of the Act, as that section relates to the commission of acts described in the Beneficiary Inducements CMP.