$240 MM for the Whistleblowers and Government in settlement of drug testing claims.
Joel Androphy and Sarah Frazier of Berg & Androphy along with Esdaile, Barrett, Jacobs & Mone, represented Ryan Uehling, one of the whistleblowers in a government settlement with Millennium Laboratories, a case that involved multiple qui tam actions in the United States District Court in Massachusetts. Millennium agreed to pay $240 million to resolve alleged violations of the False Claims Act for billing 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, the Justice Department announced today.
Millennium, headquartered in San Diego, is one of the largest urine drug testing laboratories in the United States and conducts business nationwide. In connection with the False Claims Act settlements, Millennium has also entered into a corporate integrity agreement (CIA) with the Department of Health and Human Services-Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG). The investigation was conducted by the Civil Division’s Commercial Litigation branch, the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the District of Massachusetts, HHS-OIG and HHS’ Office of the General Counsel, CMS, the Office of Personnel and Management Office of Inspector General, the U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General, the Department of Veterans Affairs and the FBI.
According to the government’s press release, the claims resolved by the settlement are allegations only, and there has been no determination of liability.
The False Claims Act allegations resolved were originally brought in lawsuits filed by whistleblowers under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act, which allows private parties to bring suit on behalf of the government and to share in any recovery. Under the Act, the United States can elect to intervene in an action filed by a whistleblower, as it did, in part, with respect to several of the qui tam actions including Ryan Uehling’s, regarding urine drug testing allegations. The whistleblowers and the government will receive about $240MM from the False Claims Act recovery for the urine drug testing claims.