|November 23, 2015
Contact: Whitney Ray
Phone: (850) 245-0150
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—Attorney General Pam Bondi, 48 other attorneys general and the District of Columbia, today announced a settlement, totaling $256 million, with Millennium Health, formerly Millennium Laboratories, to resolve alleged violations of the False Claims Act. Millennium allegedly billed Medicare, Medicaid and other federal health care programs for medically unnecessary urine drug and genetic testing, and for providing free items to physicians who agreed to refer expensive laboratory testing business to Millennium. Millennium, headquartered in San Diego, is one of the largest urine drug testing laboratories in the United States and conducts business nationwide.
As part of the settlements, Millennium agreed to pay $227 million to resolve allegations for billing federal health care programs for excessive and unnecessary urine drug testing from Jan. 1, 2008, through May 20, 2015. The states alleged Millennium caused physicians to order excessive numbers of urine drug tests, in part through the promotion of custom profiles, instead of assessing individual patients’ needs. This practice violated federal healthcare program rules limiting payment to services that are reasonable and medically necessary.
The states also alleged that Millennium’s provision of free point of care urine drug test cups to physicians—expressly conditioned on the physicians’ agreement to return the urine specimens to Millennium for hundreds of dollars’ worth of additional testing—violated the Stark Law and the Anti-Kickback Statute. The Stark Law and the Anti-Kickback Statute generally prohibit laboratories from giving physicians anything of value in exchange for referrals of tests.
Millennium also agreed to pay $10 million to resolve allegations that it submitted false claims to federal health care programs from Jan. 1, 2012, through May 20, 2015, for genetic testing that was performed routinely and without an individualized assessment of need.
In connection with the False Claims Act settlements, Millennium entered into a corporate integrity agreement with the Department of Health and Human Services-Office of Inspector General. In addition, Millennium will pay $19.2 million to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to resolve certain administrative actions related to Millennium’s urine drug test billing practices.
A team representing the National Association of Medicaid Fraud Control Units, led by Florida’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, conducted settlement negotiations with Millennium Health on behalf of the states. The team also included Georgia, New York, North Carolina, and Washington Medicaid Fraud Control Units. The states coordinated the investigation in conjunction with the Department of Justice Civil Division’s Commercial Litigation branch, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the District of Massachusetts.