|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
THURSDAY, APRIL 28, 2011
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE – A Hickman County man is charged with trying to use TennCare public healthcare insurance benefits to pay for a forged prescription.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of Andrew M. Pruett, 30, of Centerville. Pruett’s arrest was assisted by the 21st Judicial Drug Task Force.
A Williamson County Grand Jury indicted Pruett on one count of TennCare fraud for presenting at a pharmacy a prescription for Lortab that was allegedly altered to increase the quantity and attempting to use his TennCare to pay for the drugs.
“Prescription drug fraud takes many forms, and altering the prescription to increase the quantity is one of those methods that pharmacists keep a watchful eye for,” Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner said. “We’re thankful pharmacists are catching this and following up when they have questions.”
Pruett faces one count of TennCare fraud which is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison. District Attorney General Kim R. Helper 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 1,400 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."