Deloris Diane Hunt was the owner of Home Sweet Home, an in home care business, had been charged with 25 counts of health care fraud for falsely billing Medicaid services for services that were never rendered. She was found guilty and received a sentence of 50 years in prison, but with the vast majority of that sentence suspended.
All but six months of the sentence has been suspended, but there are strong conditions of probation, which include good behavior and paying restitution, with interest. She will serve six months in prison, but if she doesn’t meet with the expectations of the court at any time, she could find herself back in prison serving the entirety of the sentence.
As reported in the news blog, Bassett woman sentenced on healthcare fraud charges, written by Paul Collins and published by Martinsville Bulletin:
“In 2012, the Department of Medical Assistance Services (also known as the Virginia Medicaid Program) conducted an audit of Home Sweet Home. The findings of the audit were released in September 2012. During the audit, Medicaid discovered that Hunt allegedly was using people as employees who were not properly vetted to do the assessments and monthly visits. Another issue discovered involved billing for services without the necessary documentation on the monthly assessments.
Hunt “was educated about these issues in how her business was conducted and specifically in her billing practices. Ms. Hunt advised Medicaid that she had been very ill and did the best she could. Medicaid retracted over $12,000 for the issues found in the audit,” the summary said.”
Investigators appear to have stumbled upon the fraud while investigating other situations and interviewing Ms. Hunt. Ms. Hunt repeatedly claimed she had serious health issues and had either not been working within the agency at a specific time or that she was unable to complete certain required forms at the time. Investigators had been seeking various documents regarding services, which led them to some of these charges.
The fraud took place between 2013 and 2015 and the original indictment stated Ms. Hunt had unlawfully, feloniously, knowingly, and willfully provide false statements and submitted falsified claims to Medicaid services.
It wasn’t made clear during sentencing where Ms. Hunt would serve her six month sentence or whether she would be permitted to work within the in home care field again once her sentence was completed.