Many professional caregivers provide invaluable support to people with disabilities and illnesses that could not otherwise care for themselves. Generally, people who work in that field do so because of a desire to help others, in addition to pursuing a career and earning a living. An article published in the Pensacola News Journal tells about a caregiver who, if the allegations in this case are true, may have had other motivations.
The story states that the female caregiver failed to notify her employer that she had been arrested for Medicaid fraud once before. (Did she really think that no one would find out?) This crime automatically makes her ineligible to work in the health care field, and she is not allowed to submit Medicaid reports or billing claims. (Did she not learn an important lesson the first time around?)
The young woman has been charged with one count of Medicaid fraud. If convicted, she faces a prison sentence of up to five years plus $32,000 in fines and restitution.
While we really do not know this woman’s intentions, it is critical to remember that she is innocent until proven guilty.
Even so, this case is a perfect example of how serious the government takes allegations of Medicare fraud. (It doesn’t matter whether the amount stolen is big or small, suspected offenders will be prosecuted.) Perhaps this new set of allegations will inspire the defendant to reconsider her motives.
Source: Today’s ”Fraud of the Day” is based on an article titled, ”Caregiver Faces 5 Years for Medicaid Fraud,” published by the Pensacola News Journal on July 17, 2015.
Attorney General Pam Bondi’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, with the assistance of the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office, arrested Gloria Michal’le Hardaway, 25, on Friday for allegedly defrauding the Florida Medicaid program out of more than $5,500, according to a news release from the attorney general’s office.
According to the investigation, Hardaway, a caregiver working in Escambia County, failed to report to her employer that she previously had been arrested for Medicaid fraud, making her ineligible to work in the health care field or submit reports for Medicaid billings, according to the release.