Politics

Rutledge Announces Medicaid Fraud Arrest of White County Woman Pamela Townsend-Bell


LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge announced the arrest of Pamela Townsend-Bell, of Judsonia, on allegations that she fraudulently billed Medicaid. Townsend-Bell, a licensed clinical social worker, owns “I’m a 10 Wellness Center, LLC”, a mental health agency, located in Searcy. Townsend-Bell billed Medicaid for one-on-one individual counseling services provided by unlicensed staff, listing herself as the performing provider. The unlicensed staff included non-paid interns and office staff. Medicaid requires these types of outpatient mental health services to be provided by licensed therapists.

Between 2018-2021, Townsend-Bell submitted over 300 fraudulent Medicaid claims totaling more than $18,600. Townsend-Bell purposely made false statements for payments that violated the rules and provider agreements issued by the Arkansas Medicaid Program. In addition, she purposely made false entries in medical records indicating she provided services to Medicaid recipients. Townsend-Bell was charged with two counts of Medicaid Fraud, Class “B” felonies. She appeared before the Pulaski County District Court on March 18, 2022, and was released pending further proceedings.

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Medicaid fraud occurs when providers use the Medicaid program to obtain money to which they are not entitled. To report Medicaid fraud or abuse or neglect in residential care facilities, contact the Attorney General’s Medicaid fraud hotline at (866) 810-0016 or [email protected]

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