LAFAYETTE — The owner of a home medical equipment company in Rayne pleaded guilty Tuesday to one count of health care fraud stemming from the sale of power wheelchairs to Medicare beneficiaries, according to the woman’s guilty plea.
Dorothy Cole, who did business as Rest Assure Home Medical Equipment, faces a possible maximum sentence of up to 10 years in federal prison and restitution in the amount of $175,923, according to her plea.
Cole pleaded guilty before U.S. District Magistrate Judge Patrick J. Hanna.
Cole was accused of routinely billing Medicare for providing K0829 and K0848 model power wheelchairs to Medicare beneficiaries, “when in fact, she never provided the Medicare beneficiaries with these costly power wheelchairs. Instead, she provided her customers with less expensive power wheelchairs and scooters,” the woman’s plea states.
Medicare paid between $4,592 and $5,074 for the K0829 power wheelchair and between $3,825 and $4,227 for the K0848 model, according to the guilty plea.
The scheme occurred from August 2007 through April 2009 and resulted in $175,923 in fraudulent billings to Medicare, the plea states.
Cole was released on her own recognizance. She is scheduled to be sentenced Jan. 17.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kelly P. Uebinger.