|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MONDAY, JUNE 18, 2012
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE – A Roane County woman is charged for a second time with “doctor shopping,” or going to multiple doctors to obtain prescriptions for the same or similar controlled substances and using TennCare as payment.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) with assistance from Rhea County Sheriff’s Officers today announced the arrest of 33-year old Crystal G. Farrar, of Harriman. An indictment out of Rhea County accuses her of going to multiple physicians in a 30-day period to obtain prescriptions for the painkiller Hydrocodone.
Farrar was arrested last month after a Cumberland County indictment charging her with one count “doctor shopping” for controlled substances, using TennCare to obtain another strong prescription pain medication, Oxycodone.
“Prescription drug abuse is a big concern in Tennessee, and the nation overall,” Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner said. “The Office of Inspector General is going after anyone who misusing the TennCare program particularly when it involves prescription drugs.”
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison. District Attorney General J. Michael Taylor is prosecuting.
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."