|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MONDAY, APRIL 27, 2009
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A Lawrence County resident was charged with TennCare fraud for selling prescription pain medication that had been paid for by TennCare.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of Jacqueline J. Perkins, 48, of Lawrenceburg. Perkins is charged with one count of TennCare fraud for selling a portion of the drug morphine, obtained through TennCare. The charges stem from an investigation conducted by the OIG and the Lawrence County Drug Task Force.
“We’re looking harder at prescription drugs dispensed at the pharmacy and paid for by TennCare, to prevent people from subsidizing illegal narcotics trafficking with a taxpayer-funded program,” Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner said. “We’re working with local law enforcement and providers across the state to prevent this, and to bring people to justice for illegal activity.”
If convicted Perkins could face up to two years for the TennCare fraud charge. District Attorney Mike Bottoms will prosecute.
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 $165 million for the TennCare program, according to latest figures. To date, over 920 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.tncarefraud.tennessee.gov and follow the prompts that read "Report TennCare Fraud."