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Insurance company sues Richmond-based Health Diagnostic Laboratory for $84 million

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Health Diagnostic Laboratory, headquartered on North 5th Street, is facing a lawsuit from an insurance provider. (PHOTO: Burl Rolett)

RICHMOND, Va. —  The body blows keep coming for HDL.

In the past two months, Richmond-based Health Diagnostic Laboratory has had much of its business model called into question by the Wall Street Journal and said goodbye to its CEO. And last week the firm was hit with a lawsuit from a large national health insurance company seeking more than $80 million in damages.

Cigna, a Connecticut-based insurer, claims HDL extracted more than $84 million in fraudulent payments in what it alleges as scheme that involved waiving out-of-pocket fees for patients and then billing inflated rates to the insurance company.

“HDL has developed a business model designed to game the healthcare system by submitting grossly inflated, phantom charges to Cigna that do not reflect the actual amount HDL bills patients,” the suit reads. “The effect of HDL’s scheme is to deceive health benefit plans into paying far more for services than the plans are obligated to pay.”

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