A Long Island company that performs drug tests for New Jersey’s Medicaid program overcharged the state more than $24 million over a three-and-a-half-year period and should repay the money, the Office of the State Comptroller said in a report released Wednesday. 

Truetox Laboratories of Garden City Park performed tests for drugs in urine on more than 140,000 samples between Jan. 1, 2015 and June 30, 2018, the audit said. It is one of Medicaid’s highest paid providers of laboratory services. 

While Truetox was charging other payers $3 per test, it billed the New Jersey Medicaid program between $1,300 and $1,500 for the same test, the state’s audit found. Medicaid didn’t pay the full charges, but it paid Truetox $250 for each test.  

State law prohibits Medicaid providers from charging Medicaid higher fees than other payers for the same service.  

Repayment of the overcharges to the state is “especially important given New Jersey’s ongoing opioid crisis,” said the acting State Comptroller, Kevin D. Walsh. “By our office recouping these funds, more money will go back to the Medicaid program, which will in turn provide more services for this population in suffering.” 

Urine sample test kit.

Truetox said through its attorney Tuesday that it had “immediately corrected and voluntarily reported” to the state an error in its billing software that was detected during an internal review conducted in 2018.

“Instead of recognizing Truetox’s good faith, the state now seeks to punish Truetox Laboratories for extending discounts to uninsured patients under care in addiction treatment facilities,” said John W. Leardi, the attorney. “This unjustified penalty for providing legal discounts that uninsured patients need to receive treatment is bad policy and an abuse of oversight.”