Prescription drug abuse is a crime communities across the state are focused on, and were intent on eliminating the crime in the TennCare program, Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner said. The Office of Inspector General has a zero toleration for this type of criminal activity and will prosecute TennCare fraud to the fullest extent of the law.
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison. District Attorney Tom P. Thompson will be prosecuting the Smith County case; District Attorney General Kim Helper will prosecute the Williamson County 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, over 1,600 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."