|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
THURSDAY, JANUARY 27, 2011
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE – A McMinn County man is charged in Knox County with TennCare fraud involving “doctor shopping,” or using TennCare to go to multiple doctors within a month’s time to obtain prescriptions for controlled substances.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG), with assistance from the Knox and McMinn Counties Sheriff’s Departments, today announced the arrest of Charles E. Self, 43, of Etowah. Self is facing two counts of TennCare fraud and is accused of fraudulently using TennCare health insurance benefits to obtain a controlled substance by “doctor shopping.” Self visited more than one doctor with 30-days, receiving a prescription for the same or similar controlled substances, with the physician office visits being paid for by TennCare.
Self was arrested last October in Bradley County for the same charge – using TennCare benefits to doctor shop for drugs.
“We intend to continue to be relentless in pursuit of individuals who commit fraud against the TennCare program,” stated Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner.
The TennCare fraud charge against Self could result in a two year sentence, if convicted. District Attorney General Randall E. Nichols is prosecuting.
The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated cases leading to over $2.5 million paid in restitution and recoupment to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of over $171 million for the TennCare program, according to latest figures. To date, over 1,300 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."