MACON CO. MAN CHARGED WITH TENNCARE FRAUD
MEIGS COUNTY MAN CHARGED WITH DRUG FRAUD IN TENNCARE
NASHVILLE, TN – A Macon County man faces TennCare fraud charges – for failing to tell the state he had private health care insurance through his employer.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG), an agency separate from TennCare, today announced the arrest of Michael Richard Jent, 38, Hartsville. He is accused of intentionally failing to tell the state that he was enrolled in employer-sponsored health insurance, which would have made him ineligible for TennCare. Jent enrolled in the program before Governor Phil Bredesen tightened TennCare eligibility so that adults not eligible for Medicaid can no longer receive Medicaid benefits.
“Historically, there had been a strong perception that there were many cases like this in the TennCare program – people getting benefits they were not eligible for,” Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner said. “Thanks to Governor Bredesen’s reforms, and his initiative to wage war on TennCare fraud, we are quickly eliminating this problem while continuing to pursue cases that occurred in the past.”
The indictment charges Jent with both TennCare fraud and theft of services for obtaining medical benefits of $11,588.36 along with $1,457.26 in pharmacy benefits. The charges against Jent are Class C and Class E felonies punishable by up to six years in prison. District Attorney Tom P. Thompson will be prosecuting.
In an unrelated case, Michael S. Henry, 19, of Decatur has been indicted in Meigs County for fraudulently attempting to obtain the painkiller Hydrocodone. Henry was taken into custody and charged with one count of TennCare fraud and one count of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud or forgery. TennCare fraud is a Class E felony, which carries a sentence of up to two years in prison. Obtaining or attempting to obtain controlled substances by fraud is a Class D felony that carries a sentence of up to fours years. District Attorney Russell Johnson will be prosecuting.
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 Fraud Now.”