OVERTON COUNTY WOMAN ARRESTED FOR TENNCARE PRESCRIPTION DRUG FRAUD
NASHVILLE – An Overton County woman has been charged with TennCare fraud for using her TennCare benefits to pay for forged prescriptions.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of 43-year-old JoAnn Bledsoe of Livingston. She was arrested by OIG Special Agents with the assistance of the Livingston Police Department. Warrants accuse her of filling multiple forged prescriptions for Avinza, a medication containing morphine, at a Livingston pharmacy at in August and September of 2004, using her TennCare benefits to pay for the drugs.
Bledsoe was charged with four counts of TennCare fraud, four counts of forgery, and two counts of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud.
“Certain prescription drugs are classified as controlled substances because they have a dangerous potential for abuse and addiction,” Inspector General Deborah Faulkner said. “TennCare pays for such medications when prescribed under the direction and supervision of a physician, but we’re committed to pursuing those cases involving fraud and abuse especially when these classifications of dangerous drugs are involved.”
TennCare fraud and forgery are Class E felonies carrying sentences of up to two years in prison. Obtaining controlled substances by fraud is a Class D felony that carries a sentence of up to four years in prison. Bledsoe’s bond was set at $5,000. She is scheduled to appear in Overton County General Sessions Court on July 26. District Attorney General William Gibson is prosecuting.
Anyone can report suspected TennCare fraud by calling 1-800-433-3982
toll-free from anywhere in Tennessee, or log on to www.tennessee.gov/tenncare
and follow the prompts that read “Report Fraud Now.”