From everyone here, at Allegiant Experts, we’d like to wish each and every one of you a very Happy Thanksgiving! As you’re undoubtedly aware, Thanksgiving Day takes place this Thursday, November 28th. Whether you happen to be stuffing your face with turkey and cranberry sauce, watching the football game or simply relaxing with your family and friends (perhaps, it’s all of the above!), we hope this Thanksgiving is your best one yet!
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Nothing will be normal for Hope Falowo this Thanksgiving. Last Friday, the 53 year-old Bowie, Maryland native pled guilty to one count of health care fraud. The plea follows a federal charge of health care fraud stemming from a scheme in which she caused the District of Columbia’s Medicaid program to be defrauded out of approximately $400,000.
As reported by District of Columbia branch of the United States Department of Justice, the former personal care aide’s charge carries a statutory maximum of 10 years in prison and potential financial penalties. “Under federal sentencing guidelines, Falowo faces a likely range of 18 to 24 months in prison and a fine of up to $250,000,” details the report, “The plea agreement calls for Falowo to pay $316,887 in restitution and $316,887 in a forfeiture money judgment.”
Falowo is scheduled for sentencing on March 20, 2020.
As the DoJ details, between January 2013 and March 2017, Falowo worked as a personal care aide for twelve home health agencies. Her job was to assist D.C. Medicaid beneficiaries in performing activities of daily living. This included such tasks as getting in and out of bed, bathing, dressing and eating. Also as part of her duties, Falowo was required to document the care she provided to the beneficiaries on timesheets.
The timesheets were submitted to the home health agencies, which would then bill Medicaid for the services she rendered. The only problem is that Falowo’s timesheet submissions were fraudulent. In fact, she caused the D.C. Medicaid Program to issue payments that totaled $399,000 for services that she did not render.
“As part of her fraud scheme, she paid kickbacks to beneficiaries and submitted false timesheets to different home health agencies claiming that she provided 24 hours or more of personal care aide services,” notes the DoJ, “She also submitted false timesheets claiming to have provided personal care aide services while she was out of the country. Stewart fraudulently earned more than $300,000 in wages as a result of the healthcare fraud scheme.”
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