|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 14, 2011
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE – A Knox County woman is charged with TennCare fraud, as another woman in Knox County is sentenced for her conviction for the same charge.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG), with the assistance of the Knox County Sheriff’s Department, today announced the arrest of Bridgette Antionette Robinson, 51, and sentencing for 31-year old Rhonda Lynn Meadows, both from Knoxville.
Robinson is accused of taking a forged prescription for a controlled substance to a pharmacy, using TennCare to pay for the drug. She faces one count of TennCare fraud and one count of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud.
Meadows had been accused of getting TennCare benefits when she was not eligible for the program. She must repay the state for almost $14,000 in medical and pharmacy services provided through TennCare while she was on the program. She was also given judicial diversion, a process available to only true first-time offenders of any crime. She’ll be on probation for three years, and because of diversion, could be allowed to have the case struck from the record.
Meadows was indicted March 2010 for TennCare fraud and theft of services for misrepresenting herself in order to gain TennCare benefits. District Attorney General Randal Nichols prosecuted this 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."