Quest Diagnostic To Pay $241M For Overcharging Medi-Cal

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The state attorney general’s office says California’s biggest provider of medical lab testing agreed to repay the state $241 million for overcharges to Medi-Cal.

The settlement from Quest Diagnostics is the result of a 2005 lawsuit brought by a whistleblower who alleged Quest systematically overcharged Medi-Cal for more than 15 years.

The suit also claimed Quest gave illegal kickbacks to doctors, hospitals and clinics that referred Medi-Cal patients and charged Medi-Cal up to six times more than other customers for tests.

In a statement, Quest officials acknowledged the settlement but denied all allegations of wrongdoing in the lawsuit.

The whistleblower in the suit was a competitor, Hunter Laboratories.

Medi-Cal is California’s Medicaid program, providing health insurance and services for the poor.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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