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 Post subject: Beware of Ameritox
PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2009 4:54 am 
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Ameritox is basically a service doctors use to monitor a patient and their compliance. The other day I received a bill for $540 for one visit. The bill contained a list of at least 30 different coded items (not sure what they really are). This fee does not include the doctor's fee and the $230 drug test. The bill came 35 days after the appointment and I was never told I would be charged for the service. I've never heard anyone else mention such a charge and I seriously doubt it is absolutely necessary for doctors to use.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 12, 2010 9:06 am 
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my pain management doc uses them for my methadone serum levels and all other drug tests...i never get billed, though...


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 22, 2012 4:01 pm 
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The fees with the codes you mentioned should be defined, especially to you who they are billing, they are way more expensive than most other labs, I do know that.

My doctor is using Ameritox and it worries me since this is an election year esp....

In additon to the $200.00 doctor visit, cash only, takes no ins, for the office visit.

My insurance (for now) pays for the lab work, but if Ameritox keeps getting more and more expensive, I don't know how much longer ins. companies will keep paying for their test(s), and from what I have researched the GuardianRX "compliance" feature of the testing is what is making Ameritox so expensive. I can understand doctors/clinics wanting to be careful that their patients are not diverting/abusing their meds, but as a thread I just started today after being surprised I only found 2 threads on this whole forum after doing a search for "Ameritox".

Ameritox has been falsely advertising how accurate their test results are. A lot of money they make for a service that is not as good as they say it is ! Milennium Labs won their law suit against Ameritox this july !

Have you got the lab test codes told to you what they are for, or is your doctor using a different lab?


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 22, 2012 5:21 pm 
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I am all about free enterprise and have absolutely no problem with companies making money for a product or service. I really don't. I have been self employed and owned my own small (very small) business all of my life. However, this whole drug testing issue is really a bunch of crap and bothers the hell out of me. On top of it, it has effected me personally in a $$$ way.

First, as I put on a different post, how in the hell did it become the doctor's job to now play DEA, police investigator, drug crime fighter? That is not the doctor's job. I have absolutely no concern with doctors doing what they can to prevent drug diversion. They really should take reasonable steps to make sure that the drugs they prescribe go only to the patient they prescribed them for and in the proper amounts. The key here is REASONABLE. When a doctor pays a lab $500 or more to investigate their patient - and does this once a month to even four times a year, that is way beyond reasonable in my opinion. Unfortunately, that is exactly what is going on. This Ameritox company is doing all they can to prey on doctor's fears that they are going to be investigated by the DEA and have their license removed or worse yet be criminally prosecuted. Therefore they say "Hey Doc, just use our system and you'll have the best defense should that ever happen. You'll show the DEA just how hard you worked to fight drug diversion." And in the end, they make thousands of dollars per patient helping the doctors become cops. What's next, DEA agents are going to start writing scripts? After all if the doctors are going to play cop, might as well let the cops play doctor!

My personal experience started about six months ago when my normal every three month Suboxone refill appointment had me sign to allow this new testing system - enter Ameritox. "Don't worry," both the doctor and the nurse tell me, "Ameritox has assured us they will not go after you if your insurance does not pay." I sign and they send my piss off to be tested. Never mind the bottle it's in already read the temperature (to make sure it was normal body temp and actually came out of me) Never mind it was negative for EVERYTHING other than Suboxone. Never mind that this test is way over 99.9% accurate. They go ahead and RETEST for everything all over again. For $400 they confirm what the first test said - negative, nothing there. They tested a NEGATIVE drug screen a second time!!! They then run a huge profile on the Sub. My insurance denies it and sure as hell, Ameritox is now after me for the $600 collection. Now in my case, my doctor has been very reasonable and the two times since then that I have seen him he no longer sends MY test to Ameritox - so long as the in bottle test is negative (positive for Sub). However, all of his other patients - most of which are pain patients he is giving the "good stuff" too - are still getting these tests. I'm still waiting to hear back from Ameritox if they will write off my bill as they promised my doctor. The latest is they sent me an application for me to prove that I have low income. That is not what the sales person told my doc. They said ANYONE who's insurance does not cover it will not be billed. Now, their company is saying only if I don't make $50,000 (or so) a year will they even consider it and then only like 10% reduction. I'd have to make something like $15,000 or perhaps $18,000 a year to fully qualify for zero bill. In other words, way below even the poverty level. At least in my case, their future business may rest on it. My doctor seems adamant that if they pursue me, he will drop the service. I suspect that he is also seeing that he got sold a bill of goods and the salesperson put one over on him in general.

My main point here is with this huge epidemic going on in the USA with prescription drug abuse, with doctors getting criminally investigated more and more, with diversion at record levels, Ameritox sees a gold mine and has started to work it. Imagine how much money they can make doing $600 drug tests on even a small fraction of all of the pain patients in the USA - not to mention Sub patients (which are a minority). They see huge, huge, huge cash here and are likely making it. My biggest beef is that doctors are not even doing what is right for patients anymore. They are covering their own ass and playing police detective. I can assure you (I'm in the medical field) that it has become a huge "game" for docs, especially ER docs to catch drug addicts. They get off on it. They don't set out to do this. I really don't think they do. It's just how things have come to be with day after day drug seekers coming in. The docs hate it if a seeker burns them and tricks them into writing a script. This is so much the case that true pain patients are very often wrongly scrutinized, wrongly assumed they are seeking when they are really only in pain. Others really are seeking, are great at it and beat the doc. Thus the contest is on - with some docs posting on-line blogs about how they busted a seeker, patient after patient after patient tell stories of how they were made to feel like a drug addict because they asked for pain medication. It's gotten so out of control and now the docs are taking it to the next level - playing cop.

It's sickening!


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2012 2:12 pm 
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I just read on this forum where a memer was tested and the lab results indicated that they had Dilaudid in their system.

They claim they have never taken a dilly, and I tend to believe them after my test results from Ameritox at me last doc would sometimes show low levels (below the lab's cut off to be considered positive) of drub metabolites that I know I have never taken, even PCP's metabolite and I have not even seen this stuff on the streets for a long time.

For Ameritox to show even low amounts of illicit substances, something has to be wrong with their testing protocol or something.

I agree w. donh, soon the DEA will be writing any narcotic scripts, or maybe they will have a place in each town where one would have to get their prescriptions approved, like make they would put a stamp or their seal of approval on the script..lol

I can only imagine how it will be after this election, since both Ob. and Romney are proposing to slash SS, that will have a snowbal effect on other things of course, like not covering suboxone to disabled or seniors, then I guess even more of those people will have to resort to selling some of their meds on the street in hopes of having food/shelter in addition to having their pain meds or sub for rehab?


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Fond Du Lac Psychiatry
Dr. Jeffrey Junig, M.D., Ph.D.

  • Board Certified Psychiatrist
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