FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE, TN – A Williamson County woman is charged in nearby Rutherford County with TennCare fraud for selling prescription drugs paid for by the state’s public healthcare insurance program.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of Deandrea L. Jeffery, 25, of Franklin, after a joint investigation with the Smyrna Police Department Narcotics Division.
Jeffery is charged with TennCare fraud in connection with using TennCare benefits to obtain a prescription for the painkiller Hydrocodone, while planning to sell at least a portion of the prescription.
“This makes up the bulk of our caseload – people using TennCare to obtain drugs for resale,” Inspector General Deborah Faulkner said. “We are making arrests every week, and we don’t plan to slow down as local police and providers are working with us with the same goal.”
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison. District Attorney General William C. Whitesell, Jr., is prosecuting.
The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated cases leading to over $3.5 million paid in restitution and recoupment to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of over $173 million for the TennCare program, according to latest figures. To date, over 1,700 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."