|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
THURSDAY, JUNE 23, 2011
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE - A Davidson County woman is charged with using her daughter’s benefits for TennCare, the state’s public healthcare program.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of Shelley A. Sullivan, 35, of Hermitage. Metro Nashville Police and the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office made the arrest.
An indictment charges Sullivan with two counts of TennCare fraud, accusing her of using a prescription that had been altered to show her daughter as the recipient, and she used the girl’s TennCare card to pay for the drugs.
“Prescription drug fraud takes many forms, and forging prescriptions for narcotics is one of those methods that pharmacists should 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.”
If convicted, Sullivan could serve up to two years in prison for each charge of TennCare fraud which is a Class E felony. District Attorney General Tom P. Thompson 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, nearly 1,500 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."