Says, ‘I refuse to let a company exploit Arkansans and that is why I am holding Med-Care accountable for stealing from the State’
LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today announced the filing of a lawsuit against Med-Care Health Link, LLC of Virginia and others for failing to provide more than $10 million worth of personal protective equipment and 560 ventilators to University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) as Arkansas and the country prepared for the growing COVID-19 pandemic. In March and April 2020, UAMS paid Med-Care a total of $10,940,000 to purchase gowns, face shields, and ventilators. To date, Med-Care has failed to deliver these goods or return the money to UAMS or the Department of Finance and Administration (DFA). The lawsuit claims Med-Care breached the contracts with UAMS and violated the Arkansas Deceptive Trade Practices Act (ADTPA).
“At a time when Arkansans were most desperate for equipment to protect their health and safety, Med-Care took advantage of one of Arkansas’s largest hospitals and violated the trust of millions of Arkansans,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “I refuse to let a company exploit Arkansans and that is why I am holding Med-Care accountable for stealing from the State during one of our most vulnerable times.”
In March and April 2020, the State, through both UAMS and DFA, contracted with Med-Care to purchase 4 million gowns, 560 ventilators, and one million face shields for $10,940,000. From April 2020 until September 2020, UAMS representatives had numerous telephone calls, e-mail exchanges, and text message exchanges with Med-Care representatives regarding the transactions to track down the gowns and ventilators and arrange delivery to UAMS. Med-Care representatives made false statements that products purchased by UAMS were in California or Virginia, or even sold by the Chinese manufacturer to someone else. Ultimately, Med-Care failed to deliver the gowns or ventilators to UAMS.
The lawsuit seeks a refund of $10,940,000 with interest and civil penalties of up to $10,000 for each ADTPA violation.