$10.6M Fine for Overbilling Mileage

A federal judge has issued a $10,600,000 ruling against the man who own BestCare Laboratory Services LLC of Webster TX. Karim Maghareh was alleged to have billed Medicare automotive transportation charges for specimens that were shipped by airplane.  The ruling is available here.

The ruling cites an example where Medicare was charged $18,360 for the shipping of twenty four specimens from El Paso to the lab outside Houston, the owners concealed that the samples were shipped by airfreight and not driven. The judge also ruled that the Limited Liability Company did not protect the owners from liability, which is an increasingly common occurrence in regulatory claims. Many business owners wrongly assume that corporate structures protect them from liability while courts continue to chip away at this coverage for regulated industries and in situations involving professional services, employment related issues and when owners have a fiduciary responsibility to investors.

Resources put behind government investigations are increasing and the legal costs to defend against the claims can be catastrophic. Regulatory coverage is available in several commercial insurance products but is not always standard. Directors and Officers insurance can include regulatory coverage but the standard exclusions would likely eliminate coverage for over billing. Malpractice policies can also potentially include focused coverage for regulatory actions. Structuring these policies together, and potentially including a standalone regulatory policy, can be done by an expert broker.

Contact LaboratoryMalpractice.com to connect to an expert broker who can assist in ensuring your insurance program responds to your risks in the most cost effective way possible. Not all policies are created equal and the terms included vary widely between carriers. A specialist insurance intermediary can secure the most comprehensive insurance policy possible at the lowest potential pricing.

$50M Genetic Testing Verdict

A jury in King County Washington has returned a $50M verdict against Valley General Hospital and LabCorp in one of the largest wrongful birth lawsuits to date.

Rhea and Brock Wuth had ordered chromosomal tests after discovering that the father was a carrier for a rare genetic disease. It was alleged that Valley understaffed their genetic counseling office which caused LabCorp to not receive proper documentation on family history, which in the end caused a false negative. It was also noted that the LabCorp test was run by a trainee who left the company three days later. The couple’s child was born with an unexpected cognitive and physical impairments and requires a lifetime of care. The family argued they would have terminated the pregnancy had they known of the abnormality.

After a seven week trial the jury agreed with the families estimate that lifelong care would cost $20M and against the LabCorp’s plan to place the child in a group home at a cost of $2.3M.

The case shows the growing risk of missing any of an increasing portfolio of genetic factors new mothers expect to be tested for. Contract LaboratoryMalpractice.com today to discuss better protecting your organization.