Idaho dental hygienist sentenced to prison for Medicaid fraud

An Idaho dental hygienist charged with Medicaid fraud has been sentenced to 60 months in prison.

Cherie Dillon, 62, of Fruitland, ID, pleaded guilty earlier this year to healthcare fraud and aggravated identity theft, according to a statement by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Idaho. Previously a dental hygienist with Dental Healthcare with Heart in Payette, ID, she performed dental services between January 1, 2010, and December 31, 2013, that may only be performed by a dentist.

Dillon was paid for the services by healthcare benefits programs, including Medicaid, while fraudulently misrepresenting that the services had been performed and supervised by a dentist. She used the name and provider number of a dentist who was not in the office and was unable to practice at the time, according to the statement.

She was also ordered to pay restitution of $550,000 and forfeit $847,000 of the proceeds from her fraud, although these amounts are preliminary pending a subsequent hearing.

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