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Laboratory and IDTF

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Catch of the Week – Inform Diagnostics

Posted  02/1/19
Texas-based pathology laboratory company Inform Diagnostics, formerly known as Miraca Life Sciences Inc., agreed on January 30th to a $63.5 million settlement to resolve allegations it violated the False Claims Act (“FCA”), the Anti-Kickback Statute (“AKS”), and the Stark Law by providing subsidies to referring physicians for electronic health record (“EHR”) technology as well as free or discounted...

January 30, 2019

Inform Diagnostics, formerly known as Miraca Life Sciences Inc., will pay $63.5 million to resolve allegations that it violated the False Claims Act, Anti-Kickback Statute and Stark Law.  The pathology laboratory company provided referring physicians with subsidies for electronic health records systems, as well as free or discounted technology consulting services, which were alleged to constitute improper financial relationships not subject to any safe harbor.  Three separate whistleblowers had filed qui tam lawsuits against the laboratory; they will receive a share of the settlement that is yet to be determined.  DOJ; USAO MDTN

December 19, 2018

Molecular Testing Labs, based in Vancouver, Washington, has agreed to settle claims that it violated the False Claims Act by paying local laboratories in exchange for referrals, in violation of the Anti-Kickback Statute.  The amount of the settlement will be determined in ongoing litigation between Molecular Testing Labs and CMS, and could be between $180,000 and $1,777,738. USAO WDWA

November 28, 2018

Dr. Thomas Baker, Dr. Carolyn Kochert, Dr. Larry L. Zhou, and Dr. Julie Y. Chao, have agreed to settle with the United States Government for violation of the Federal False Claims Act, the Physician Self-Referral law (“Stark”), and the Anti-Kickback Statute due to their involvement in a kickback scheme with Southwest Laboratories and Medscan Laboratory, thus causing false claims to be submitted to Medicare. The four physicians will pay a total amount of over $1.5 million. The individual amounts paid are as follows: Dr. Baker, of Tennessee - $484,481.80; Dr. Kochert, of Indiana - $129,682.84; Dr. Zhou, of Kentucky - $277,758.18; Dr. Chao, of Indiana - $650,000. DOJ

November 20, 2018

Gray Wesley Barrow, a doctor and co-owner of Louisiana Spine & Sports LLC, a pain management clinic in Baton Rouge, has pleaded guilty to receiving approximately $336,000 in unlawful kickbacks.  According to the plea, between 2014 and 2016 Barrow sent urine specimens collected from his patients to a drug testing laboratory that agreed to pay him a percentage of the reimbursements paid to the laboratory by health care benefit programs including Medicare. DOJ; USAO M.D. La.

September 19, 2018

Calloway Laboratories, Inc.—a Massachusetts-based clinical laboratory—has been ordered to pay a civil judgment of $1,374,058 to settle claims first brought to light by a former employee in a whistleblower lawsuit. The laboratory allegedly violated the Anti-Kickback Statute, Stark Law, and False Claims Act over the course of six months by providing free testing supplies to doctors in exchange for referrals and then submitting reimbursement claims for testing arising from these improper referrals to Medicare and TRICARE. USAO EDKY

August 29, 2018

Atlantic Mobile Imaging Services, Inc. has agreed to pay $321,388.50 to settle allegations that it knowingly billing federal healthcare programs over $160,000 for x-ray services provided while it was unlicensed, in violation of the False Claims Act. The alleged fraud took place over a span of six months in 2015. USAO MDFL

December 21, 2017

Rhode Island-based Dominion Diagnostics, Inc. agreed to pay $815,000 to resolve claims of violating the False Claims Act by presenting claims to Medicare and Vermont Medicaid for urine specimen validity testing when referring physicians did not specifically order the testing. DOJ (DVT)

December 12, 2017

Mobile imaging companies PDQ Imaging Services, LLC, PDQ Ultrasound Services, LLC, PDQ Mobile X-Ray Services, PDQ Mobile X-Ray, LLC, along with their owners Dennis Whitsell and Jonathan Graham Lane, agreed to pay $300,000 to settle charges of violating the False Claims Act and Anti-Kickback Statute by improperly billing Medicare for transportation charges related to portable x-ray services and paying kickbacks to skilled nursing facilities in exchange for patient referrals. The allegations originated in a whistleblower lawsuit filed under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act by Kevin P. McDonough and Boyd K. Billington. They will receive a whistleblower award of roughly $60,000 from the proceeds of the government's recovery. DOJ (EDTX)

October 20, 2017

Jacksonville-based toxicology lab Total Lab Care, LLC agreed to pay $212,500 to resolve allegations it violated the False Claims Act and Anti-Kickback Statute by improperly paying a physician for referring toxicology samples.  DOJ (MDFL)
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