Hamilton Co. Woman Charged with TennCare Drug Fraud

Monday, May 22, 2017 | 1:31pm

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A Hamilton County woman is charged with doctor shopping for prescription drugs, using TennCare as payment for the pills. Doctor shopping involves going to multiple doctors in a short period of time to obtain prescription drugs, often controlled substances.

The Office of Inspector General (OIG) with the assistance of the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office today announced the arrest of Shana D. Clay, 30, of Chattanooga. She is charged with three counts of TennCare fraud by doctor shopping for the painkillers Hydrocodone and Tramadol, using TennCare as payment.

“Tennessee is fortunate to have the laws and the authority to pursue people who are doctor shopping for drugs, whether it’s for personal abuse or with the intent of distribution,” Inspector General Manny Tyndall said.

District Attorney General Neal Pinkston is prosecuting. TennCare fraud is now a Class D felony punishable by up to four years in prison.

The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated cases leading to more than $3 million being repaid to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of more than $163.6 million for TennCare, according to latest figures. To date, 2,842 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 visit the website and follow the prompts that read “Report TennCare Fraud.”