An Elmhurst woman who ran a home health care service with offices in Freeport, Chicago, and Morris, has been sentenced for health care fraud and a kickback scheme.
Merigrace Orillo will serve 20 months in prison and pay $744,4481 in restitution to the Medicare Trust Fund. She was the co-owner and operator of Chalice Home Healthcare Services along with her husband Virgilio Orillo.
According to a press release from the U.S. Department of Justice, Merigrace Orillo admitted to falsifying documents in an effort to increase the payments Medicare gave to Chalice between January 2007 and April 2010. She did this through making Chalice's patients appear to be sicker and in greater need of care they actually were, thereby increasing Medicare payments.
Orillo also admitted to helping her husband pay cash kickbacks to a Chicago doctor in exchange for the doctor referring patients to Chalice. She used funds from Chalice's bank account in order to pay the doctor.
The court found Orillo's scheme cause the Medicare program to lose over $700,000. Charges against her husband, Virgilio, were dropped after his death on August 30, 2011.
Orillo will not be eligible for parole.
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