FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE, TN – A Bedford County woman is charged with TennCare fraud.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG), with the assistance of officers from the Bedford County Sheriff and Smyrna Police, today announced the arrest of Heather Dawn Deskins, 29, of Shelbyville.
She is charged in a Bedford County indictment with two counts of TennCare fraud for fraudulently obtaining TennCare healthcare insurance benefits on two separate occasions, even though she was not eligible for the program. The TennCare fraud charges could result in a two year sentence per charge, if convicted. District Attorney General Robert Carter is prosecuting.
“It’s plain and simple: if you’re not eligible for TennCare but find a way around the system, you are going to be caught,” Inspector General Deborah Faulkner said. “We work these cases across the state and we’re committed to prosecuting them all.”
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 1,900 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."