(COLUMBUS, Ohio) – Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced today that Ayana Parks, of Columbus, was sentenced on Dec. 16 to five years of community control and ordered to repay $7,500 in restitution to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services in a fraud case that involved kickbacks from her to a Medicaid recipient. She would bill for services never performed, then kick back to the Medicaid recipient some of the money received to pay for the phantom services.
"Unfortunately, this case shows that sometimes even Medicaid recipients can take advantage of the system," said Attorney General DeWine. "But we will pursue anyone who harms health care for those in need and tries to steal taxpayers' dollars."
Parks, 29, as an independent home care provider, entered into an arrangement with Medicaid recipient Karima Amatullah-Razzaq in which, over the course of several months beginning in June 2009, Parks would bill for weekend health care services but not have to show up. Two other aides who entered into a similar agreement with the same recipient pled guilty earlier this year, as did Amatullah-Razzaq.
In addition, the recipient said Parks also allegedly billed for two other days during the week for which she performed no work.
An investigator for the Attorney General's Office also determined that Parks had allegedly billed for 72 hours of services at the same time that she was hospitalized.
Parks also worked for a nursing home and two other health care providers during the same time that she billed for independent home health services to Amatullah-Razzaq.
In October, a jury found that Parks fraudulently billed the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, which administers the Medicaid program in Ohio, for an amount between $1,000 and $7,500.
Amatullah-Razzaq pled guilty on April 7, 2011, and agreed to repay $20,000 in restitution. Home health aide Robynne Watson pled guilty on May 24, 2011, and agreed to repay $8,000 in restitution. Home health aide Shaunta Dillard pled guilty March 8, 2011, and agreed to repay $1,064 in restitution.
Lisa Hackley: 614-466-3840
Dan Tierney: 614-466-3840