|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 2009
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER615.532.8560 (OFFICE)615.202.0701 (CELL)
SUMNER COUNTY MAN CHARGED WITH TENNCARE DRUG FRAUD
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A Sumner 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 assistance from Sumner County Sheriff’s Officers, today announced the arrest of Phillip D. Manning, 45, of Hendersonville. He is charged with six counts of fraudulently using TennCare to obtain controlled substances by “doctor shopping.” Manning 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 and Morphine Sulphate, with the physician office visits being paid for by TennCare.
"We have been overwhelmingly enthused with the response we’ve received from medical providers across the state in support of cracking down on people who try to ‘doctor shop,’ since this law was enacted last year,” Inspector General Deborah Faulkner said. “They are also tired of TennCare abuse – and want these drugs out of the hands of people who are getting them fraudulently.”
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 Lawrence R. Whitley is prosecuting.
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 1,050 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."