Home Health Agency With Office In Dracut Guilty Of Stealing $2.5M From MassHealth
May 16, 2019 05:42AM
WORCESTER – The former owner of a home health agency that had offices in Dracut and Worcester has been convicted on charges in connection with stealing approximately$2.5 million from the state’s Medicaid Program (MassHealth), according to Attorney General Maura Healey.
The owner of Lifestream Healthcare Alliance, Hellen Kiago, age 48, of Sturbridge, was convicted on Tuesday after a 10-day jury trial in Worcester Superior Court on charges of Medicaid False Claims (4 counts) and Larceny over $250 by False Pretenses (1 count).
She will be sentenced by Judge Robert Gordon on May 24. Lifestream was convicted on the same charges.
Kiago was indicted in 2017, after the AG’s office began receiving complaints from several former employees alleging misconduct and fraudulent billing practices.
Kiago and Lifestream were convicted on charges of billing MassHealth for services that were not authorized by physicians.
Kiago was found to have personally directed employees to provide patients with hours beyond those deemed medically necessary by the clinician in the field.
Kiago also directed employees to falsify documents to hide wrongdoing including forging physician signatures during a MassHealth audit and creating false corrective orders.
In total, these schemes defrauded MassHealth of approximately $2.5 million.
This criminal conviction is part of a larger effort by AG Healey and MassHealth to combat fraud in the home health industry.
In April, two home health care companies paid over $10 million to resolve allegations of submitting false claims to MassHealth.
In August 2018, a jury convicted the owner of a Boston home health care agency, on seven counts in connection with a scheme to steal millions from MassHealth.