by: Rachel Stockman Updated:ATLANTA —
The CEO of a local allergy testing lab is facing federal charges for allegedly falsifying test results that were sent back to patients.
According to a federal indictment, Rashaan Jackson Garth fraudulently billed about a dozen health insurance companies for testing that was not done on patients in the Metro Atlanta Area.
Federal investigators said Garth had relationships with doctors in the metro and his company, “Polaris Allergy Labs,” would provide testing for both food and pollen allergies.
According to the federal indictment, in order to save money, at times, “the laboratory technician would simply discard the patient’s blood without ever undertaking testing of it.”
The indictment stated the results would sometimes be falsified using a template and the scheme went on for at least two years.
Channel 2 Action News was there in February when federal agents raided the clinic on North Desert Drive.
“Right now there is probably hundreds if not thousands of people asking themselves, ‘did I really have the blood test I had?’” said Marlan Wilbanks, who is a health care fraud expert.
“This is like going to the hospital because you think you have a broken leg, getting an X-ray, and a doctor never looking at it,” Wilbanks said.
“Mr. Garth has made every effort to cooperate with law enforcement and eliminate any risk with patients,” said Robert Rubin, Garth’s attorney, adding that every effort has been made to doctors and patients affected.
Garth is expected to appear before a federal judge on Wednesday. At this point, it is not clear how many patients and doctors were involved.