Lab Fee Waivers Could Be Kickbacks, OIG Warns

By Jeff Overley (March 25, 2015, 3:03 PM EDT) -- A laboratory's proposal to waive fees for certain patients referred by physician practices could violate the Anti-Kickback Statute and result in serious discipline, according to an opinion released Wednesday by the Office of Inspector General at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

The advisory opinion addressed an unnamed laboratory chain's request for feedback on whether waiving some fees in exchange for receiving all referrals from physician practices would raise kickback concerns, and it concluded that problems would indeed arise.

Under the lab's proposed arrangement, fees would be waived for patients referred by practices that have exclusive agreements with insurers...

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