For Immediate Release
Media Contact: Bob Cooper
(208) 334-4112

Date: August 17, 2010

Coeur d’Alene Home Care Provider Jailed for Overbilling Medicaid

(Boise) - Barbara Buvel, 53, of Coeur d’Alene was sentenced yesterday to 80 hours of labor inmate detail for defrauding the Idaho Medicaid Program. First District Judge Barry Watson also sentenced Buvel to two years of supervised probation and ordered her to pay back the Idaho Medicaid Program $3,015. The court ordered and suspended a 315 day jail sentence. Buvel pleaded guilty on July 1, to one misdemeanor count of Petit Theft.

Buvel was a Certified Family Home provider and contracted with the Idaho Medicaid Program to take care of a patient in Buvel’s home. Although the patient moved out on June 27, 2009, and moved to Twin Falls, Buvel billed Idaho Medicaid for care for the patient from June 27, 2009 to September 27, 2009, the day the patient died in a Twin Falls hospital.

The Idaho Medicaid Program provides care to more than 200,000 vulnerable Idaho citizens who are poor, elderly or disabled. The case was investigated by Investigator Ben Gagnon and prosecuted by Deputy Attorney General Kendal McDevitt of the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit. The Attorney General’s Office prosecuted the case at the request of Kootenai County Prosecutor Barry McHugh.

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