The U.S. attorney’s office filed lawsuit against a Las Vegas medical practice-Miller Medical Group Chtd. in U.S. District Court, accusing it of defrauding two federal agencies by performing thousands of unnecessary cholesterol tests on patients.
the United States claims Miller Medical Group Chtd., which does business as Internal Medicine Associates, violated the federal False Claims Act by submitting fraudulent invoices to Medicare and the Federal Employee Health Benefit program, which provides health insurance to federal workers.
The lawsuit plays a vital part of a wider review of billing practices involving Internal Medicine Associates, where three doctors associated with the business have agreed to pay tens of thousands of dollars to settle federal claims against them.
According to the government since 2003 and up to 2006, Internal Medicine Associates billed Medicare and the federal employees’ health program, as well as other insurers, for two types of blood tests measuring cholesterol: One measuring HDL (high-density, or good) cholesterol and another measuring LDL (low-density, or bad) cholesterol.
The government alleges many of the LDL tests were not medically appropriate because, except in cases of very high HDL, the level of LDL could be determined by applying a mathematical formula to the HDL results.