Connecticut Pain Management Doctor and His Practice Pay Over $425K to Settle Improper Billing Allegations
U.S. Attorney John H. Durham, Special Agent in Charge Phillip Coyne of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General, and Connecticut Attorney General William Tong today announced that COMPREHENSIVE PAIN AND HEADACHE TREATMENT CENTERS, LLC (“CPHTC”) and its owner, MARK THIMINEUR, M.D., have entered into a civil settlement agreement with the federal and state governments in which they will pay more than $425,000 to resolve allegations that they improperly billed the Medicare and Connecticut Medicaid programs.
CPHTC is an interventional pain management medical practice with offices in Derby and Meriden, Connecticut. Thimineur is the owner of CPHTC.
The allegations against CPHTC and Thimineur arise out of improper billing for urine drug tests. There are various types of urine drug tests. Drug screening tests (also known as “qualitative” tests) determine the presence or absence of a drug or metabolite in a patient’s urine. “Quantitative” testing (also known as “definitive” or “confirmation” testing), provide a numerical concentration of a drug or metabolite in a patient’s urine.
It is alleged that CPHTC and Thimineur improperly submitted claims to Medicare and Medicaid for quantitative testing of patient urine samples, when such quantitative testing was not actually being performed. It is further alleged that CPHTC and Thimineur violated the federal and state False Claims Acts by submitting claims for alcohol tests and amphetamine/methamphetamine tests conducted on patients’ urine samples, when those tests were components of urine drug screening tests for which the CPHTC and Thimineur were already being paid by the Medicare and Connecticut Medicaid programs.
To resolve their liability, CPHTC and Thimineur will pay $427,691.90 to the federal and state governments for conduct occurring between May 15, 2013 and December 31, 2015.
This matter was investigated by the Office of Inspector General for the Department of Health and Human Services. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Richard M. Molot and by Assistant Attorney General Michael Cole of the Connecticut Office of the Attorney General.
People who suspect health care fraud are encouraged to report it by calling 1-800-HHS-TIPS or the Health Care Fraud Task Force at (203) 777-6311.