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Blackfoot woman sentenced for Medicaid fraud

A Blackfoot woman was sentenced Monday on one count of provider fraud, Attorney General Lawrence Wasden said.

Sixth District Judge David Nye sentenced Angela M. Blom, 64, to five years in prison. The court suspended the prison sentence and placed Blom on probation for five years. She was also ordered to pay $18,342 in interest.

In 2007, Blom was co-owner of Better Outlook in Pocatello. The business had contracts with the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare to provide services to Medicaid clients. The Medicaid Program Integrity Unit of the IDHW conducted an investigation, and, as a result of that investigation, Better Outlook’s provider numbers were terminated in February 2008. Twenty-two days before the termination, Blom applied for and received a contract to bill for transportation without the Medicaid Program Integrity Unit’s knowledge. Blom then submitted fraudulent transportation claims.

Blom pleaded guilty Dec. 17, 2012, to one count of provider fraud and reimbursed the state $45,508 in restitution. By pleading guilty, she admitted to submitting false claims in 2008 and 2009 to the Medicaid program for transporting Medicaid clients to and from the Better Outlook office that did not occur, according to a news release.

The criminal investigation by the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit was initiated a referral from the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare’s Medicaid Program Integrity Unit. Former Bannock County Prosecutor Mark Heideman referred the case to Idaho Attorney General’s Office for prosecution.

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