|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
FRIDAY, AUGUST 5, 2011
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE – A Giles County man is charged for a second time with TennCare “doctor shopping,” or going to multiple doctors in a short period to obtain the same or similar controlled substances, and using TennCare benefits to pay for the doctor’s visit or the drugs.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of 40-year old Tracy B. White. An indictment from the Moore County Grand Jury charges her with two counts of fraudulently obtaining a controlled substance through TennCare healthcare insurance benefits. The indictment says he saw multiple physicians within a 30-day period to obtain prescriptions for the painkiller Oxycodone, with the prescriptions being paid for by TennCare.
White was arrested June 17 of this year, after a Williamson County Grand Jury indicted him on one charge of “doctor shopping.” The drugs involved in the charge were Oxycodone and Morphine, with TennCare paying for the prescriptions.
“The abuse of prescription drugs has been a concern in both large and small communities,” Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner said. “Before the ‘doctor shopping’ law, doctors’ hands were tied when this activity occurred in TennCare, but medical providers, pharmacists and local law enforcement agencies are helping us tackle this problem when TennCare is involved.”
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years per charge in prison. District Attorney General Charles Crawford will be prosecuting the Moore County case.
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."