|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
THURSDAY, JANUARY 15, 2009
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A Grainger County woman is charged with TennCare fraud for using TennCare to pay for a forged prescription for the painkiller Lorcet at a local pharmacy.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) along with the assistance of the Grainger County Sheriff’s Office today announced the arrest of Connie L. Chamberlain, 35, of Luttrell. Chamberlain faces one felony charge for obtaining TennCare medical assistance benefits by fraud. The charges stem from Chamberlain using her TennCare benefits to pay for an unauthorized prescription for Lorcet.
“Pharmacies across Tennessee have really stepped in to help us in the war on drug fraud in TennCare,” Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner said. “They’re alert to fraudulent tactics and quick to act, allowing us to quickly respond to the crime.”
If convicted, Chamberlain could be sentenced up to two years in prison on the charge against her, which is a Class E felony. Grainger County District Attorney General James B. Dunn is prosecuting.
The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated cases leading to over $2.6 million paid in restitution and recoupment to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of over $159 million for the TennCare program, according to latest figures.
Through the OIG Cash for Tips Program established by the Legislature, Tennesseans can get cash rewards for TennCare fraud tips that lead to convictions. Anyone can report suspected TennCare fraud by calling 1-800-433-3982 toll-free from anywhere in Tennessee, or log on to www.tncarefraud.tennessee.gov and follow the prompts that read "Report TennCare Fraud."