David M. Deaton

David Deaton, a nationally recognized leader in health care law, is Co-Chair of O’Melveny’s Health Care and Life Sciences Practice and a member of the White Collar Defense and Corporate Investigations Practice. Named one of the country’s “Outstanding Healthcare Fraud & Compliance Lawyers” by Nightingale’s Healthcare News, David represents major health care organizations in complex, high-stakes regulatory, enforcement, and business matters. He conducts internal investigations for health care companies and audit committees, and he defends them in federal and state enforcement inquiries. He also counsels buyers and sellers in mergers and acquisitions, lenders and borrowers in loans and workouts, and health care companies facing strategic business challenges and opportunities. In thirteen years at the firm, David has assembled a record of expertise in the increasingly contested fields of state and federal anti-kickback and self-referral law (e.g., the Stark laws), Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement law, state and federal privacy law, and managed-care regulation. He frequently writes and speaks on these issues for national audiences.

Government Inquiries

Defending a national managed-care organization in a qui tam False Claims Act investigation into compliance with Medicare Advantage regulations, including allegations related to inflated premiums resulting from inaccurate risk-adjustment submissions
Defending an international biotechnology manufacturer in a qui tam False Claims Act investigation into kickback and off-label allegations (the U.S. Department of Justice declined to intervene and the qui tam plaintiff dismissed the case with prejudice)
Representing an academic medical center in connection with state and federal investigations into off-label marketing allegations related to pharmaceutical sponsorship of medical research activities
Defending a national managed-care organization in connection with state attorney general and congressional investigations into cancellations of individual health care insurance policies
Defending a nationally recognized physician clinic in a False Claims Act investigation involving alleged kickbacks and self-referrals in violation of the Stark laws


Internal Investigations

Conducting an internal investigation into whistleblower allegations related to a national managed-care organization’s compliance with Medicare Advantage regulations and the federal anti-kickback statute, which has led to disclosures to the U.S. Department of Justice, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the Office of the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and state regulatory and enforcement authorities
Conducting an internal review of a national managed-care organization’s compliance with Medicare Advantage risk-adjustment reimbursement rules
Conducting an internal investigation into whistleblower allegations related to a national pharmacy benefit manager’s compliance with Medicare Part D regulations
Conducting an internal investigation into whistleblower allegations related to a state Medicaid plan’s compensation arrangements with its providers
Conducting an internal investigation into whistleblower allegations concerning the quality-control practices of a biotechnology manufacturer
Conducting an internal investigation into kickback and Stark self-referral allegations related to a hospital-physician joint venture


Strategic Counseling

Advising a pharmaceutical manufacturer in connection with its compliance program, sales and marketing practices, and issues related to the Medicaid Rebate Program
Counseling a pharmacy benefits manager concerning compliance with federal and state regulatory requirements and the enforcement landscape for the pharmacy benefits sector


Transactional Diligence and Structuring

Representing a private equity fund in an $84 million leveraged buyout of a dental practice management company
Representing a private equity fund in the $137 million sale of a medical-equipment manufacturer
Representing a private equity fund in its $455 million sale of a national dental practice management company
Representing a long-term acute hospital chain in a $180 million asset sale to a competitor
Advising a hospital system in connection with a $315 million bond refinancing
Advising a nursing-home chain in connection with a refinanced credit facility


Trial Experience

Defending Alvarado Hospital Medical Center in U.S. v. Weinbaum, et al. Alvarado and its codefendants were accused of violating the federal anti-kickback statute by paying bribes, disguised as physician-relocation payments, to local doctors in exchange for patient referrals. After a seven-month trial in U.S. District Court and four months of deliberations, the jury deadlocked and the court declared a mistrial. The government thereafter dismissed all criminal charges against Alvarado and its codefendants pursuant to a civil settlement.

Good to know

Areas of Practice 1) Healthcare, 2) White Collar Defense and Corporate Investigations, 3) Health Care Mergers and Acquisitions, 4) Life Sciences Transactions, 5) Private Equity, 6) Pharmaceuticals, 7) Industrial Manufacturing and Facilities and 8) Litigation
Law School Southern Methodist University, J.D.
Education University of California at Irvine, B.A.
Bar Member / Association California State Bar Association
Most recent firm O Melveny & Myers LLP
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