Drs. Bryan Wood and Robin Peavler, the physician owners of a chain of addiction treatment centers called SelfRefind, as well as PremierTox, a clinical laboratory that performs urine drug screen testing, have agreed to pay $15.75 million plus interest to resolve False Claims Act violation allegations.
According to the settlement agreement, patients at SelfRefind were required to submit to urine drug screen testing, sometimes as often as every two weeks. The urine was screened at SelfRefind, but was not automatically sent to an outside lab for confirmatory testing.
That reportedly changed in December 2010, when Drs. Wood and Peavler each purchased a 20% stake in PremierTox. The government claimed after Drs. Wood and Peavler took a financial interest in PremierTox, SelfRefind began “automatically” sending all urine drug screens to PremierTox for confirmatory testing.
The government noted the sheer volume of urine samples that were sent to PremierTox after Drs. Wood and Peavler took an ownership interest simply overwhelmed the laboratory. As a result, the lab kept samples frozen in a storage unit for months before it could test them.