|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
THURSDAY, AUGUST 13, 2009
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
RUTHERFORD COUNTY MAN CHARGED WITH TENNCARE 'DOCTOR SHOPPING'
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A Rutherford County man has been indicted for TennCare fraud involving “doctor shopping,” or using TennCare to go to multiple doctors in a short time period to obtain controlled substances.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG), with the assistance of the Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office and the Murfreesboro Police Department, today announced the arrest of Kevin R. Auberry, 22, of Murfreesboro. He is charged with five counts of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud and five counts of fraudulently using TennCare to obtain controlled substances by “doctor shopping.” Auberry failed to disclose to his doctor that he had seen other physicians within a 30-day period and received prescriptions for the strong painkillers hydrocodone, oxycodone, and Tylenol 3 with the prescriptions being paid for by TennCare.
"We are enthused with the response we’ve received from physicians across the state in support of cracking down on people who try to ‘doctor shop,’ using TennCare to pay for it,” Inspector General Deborah Faulkner said.
TennCare fraud involving doctor shopping is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years per charge in prison. District Attorney General William Whitesell, Jr. is prosecuting.
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.tn.gov/tnoig and follow the prompts that read "Report TennCare Fraud."