|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
TUESDAY, AUGUST 31, 2010
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE – Four people from Dickson County have been charged with misusing the TennCare program, all involving prescription drugs.
The arrests were made by the Office of Inspector General (OIG) with the assistance of the Dickson County Police Department. All the arrests involve the use of TennCare benefits to pay for fraudulent prescriptions:
“Healthcare providers, local law enforcement officials, and state agencies are no longer tolerating this kind of blatant abuse of TennCare, especially when it relates to addictive prescription painkillers,” Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner said. “We are intent on prosecuting every one of these cases to the fullest extent possible.”
The TennCare fraud charges against all four subjects could result in a two year sentence per charge, if convicted. District Attorney General Dan M. Alsobrooks will prosecute.
The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated cases leading to over $2.5 million paid in restitution and recoupment to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of over $171 million for the TennCare program, according to latest figures. To date, over 1,240 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."