Silver Spring social worker pleads guilty in fraudulent-claims case -- Gazette.Net


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A social worker from Silver Spring faces up to 10 years in prison and a fine of $250,000 after pleading guilty to health care fraud in federal court in Greenbelt Friday.

In 1996, Rosemary McDowall, 59, began working with Blue Cross Blues Shield of Maryland (BCBS), according to her plea agreement.

But as part of her contract, McDowall had to notify BCBS if she lost her social work license.

Her plea agreement said Maryland’s State Board of Social Work Examiners suspended her license in 2005 “for numerous violations,” but McDowall didn’t inform Blue Cross Blue Shield of the suspension, and continued to work as a social worker and charge BCBS for the work.

This continued until 2010, when BCBS learned that McDowall had not been licensed to practice social work since 2005 and stopped paying claims submitted by McDowall or her patients.

McDowall pleaded guilty to submitting between $120,000 and $200,000 in fraudulent claims.

Besides a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000, McDowall will have to pay restitution for all of the money she defrauded BCBS, according to her plea agreement.

McDowall will be sentenced July 8 before U.S. District Judge Roger W. Titus in Greenbelt.

McDowall’s attorney could not be reached by phone.

stjbarned-smith@gazette.net