|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 8, 2008
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE - A Gibson County man has been indicted for TennCare fraud involving “doctor shopping,” or using TennCare to pay for multiple doctors in a short time period to obtain controlled substances.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG), with the assistance of the Gibson County Sheriff’s Office, today announced the arrest of Jerald G. Rodgers, 43, of Humboldt.
Rodgers is charged with three counts of fraudulently using TennCare to obtain controlled substances by “doctor shopping,” by failing to disclose to his doctor that he had seen other physicians within a 30-day period and received prescriptions for the painkiller Kadian, which is a time-released Morphine drug. The physician office visits were paid for by TennCare.
Rodgers was being held in the Madison County jail as a result of revocation of his community corrections sentence, which was meted for a charge of manufacturing methamphetamine. The Gibson County Sheriff’s Office transported Rodgers from Madison County to Gibson County where he was served.
"We have received an overwhelming response from physicians across the state who are joining us in eliminating ‘doctor shopping,’” Inspector General Deborah Faulkner said. “Before the doctor shopping law, physicians’ hands were tied and now with their help, we are aggressively pursuing these cases.” 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 Garry Brown is prosecuting.
The OIG, a law enforcement agency separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has worked cases leading to the arrest of over 760 individuals for TennCare fraud, with nearly $1 million paid in restitution to TennCare, and total estimated cost avoidance in TennCare of over $122 million, according to latest figures.
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.tncarefraud.tennessee.gov and follow the prompts that read "Report TennCare Fraud."