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Arraignment postponed for Bakersfield OBGYN with over 30 felony charges of making false health benefit claims

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Posted at 5:53 PM, Sep 23, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-23 20:53:58-04

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — A well-known Bakersfield doctor and OBGYN appeared in court Monday after being charged with over 30 felony charges of making false claims for health benefits.

Jason Paul Helliwell, M.D's, who's office is located on Brimhall and Coffee Roads, and two of his alleged business partners were supposed to be arraigned Monday but it was postponed to October 3.

According to court documents, Helliwell was involved in an in-house blood allergy testing machine wherein former employees reported Dr. Helliwell was ordering frequent, and likely unnecessary, allergy tests on patients that had no complaint of allergy symptoms. The second involved an agreement between Dr. Helliwell and toxicology lab where in Dr. Helliwell subjected his patients to other unnecessary lab testing.

Officials said Dr. Helliwell was supposed to pocket between $20 to $25 dollars per patient who agreed to tests involved in the scheme.

The other suspects, identified as Brandon Williams and Tambra Head allegedly helped with the crimes.

Documents said Head worked as Helliwell's biller during the time frame the schemes took place. Officials said an investigation revealed emails between Helliwell and Head showing that the two conspired to commit billing fraud.

The investigation also revealed that Williams was the toxicology representative involved in the scheme.

According to the California Medical Board, Helliwell is currently on probation for gross negligence and sexual misconduct