|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 27, 2010
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A Sullivan County woman has been indicted for TennCare fraud involving “doctor shopping,” or using TennCare to go to multiple doctors in a short time period to obtain controlled substances.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) with the assistance of the Washington and Sullivan County Sheriffs’ Offices today announced the arrest of Deborah G. Boutchyard, 51, of Kingsport.
Boutchyard is charged with eight counts of fraudulently using TennCare to obtain controlled substances by “doctor shopping,” one count of attempting to obtain possession of a controlled substance by fraud, and one count of theft over $1,000.00. Boutchyard failed to disclose to her doctor that she had seen other physicians within a 30-day period and received prescriptions for controlled substances, with the physician office visits being paid for by TennCare.
"We are enthused with the response we’ve received from physicians across the state in support of cracking down on people who try to doctor shop,” Inspector General Deborah Faulkner said. “Before the ‘doctor shopping’ law, physicians’ hands were tied but now they can report this violation to us and we go after them.”
TennCare fraud involving doctor shopping is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years per charge in prison. District Attorney General H. Greeley Wells, Jr. is prosecuting.
The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated cases leading to over $2.5 million paid in restitution and recoupment to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of over $171 million for the TennCare program, according to latest figures. To date, over 1,100 people have been charged with TennCare fraud.
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.tn.gov/tnoig and follow the prompts that read "Report TennCare Fraud."