FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE, TN – A Sumner County woman is charged for a second time with “doctor shopping,” or using TennCare to go to multiple doctors in a short period of time to obtain controlled substances.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG), with the assistance of the Williamson County Sheriff’s Office, today announced the arrest of 32-year old Katherine L. Fry, of Whitehouse. She is charged in a Williamson County indictment with using TennCare to “doctor shop” for prescriptions for the painkiller Oxycodone. TennCare pharmacy benefits paid for the prescriptions.
Fry was arrested earlier this month on an indictment in Sumner County for seven counts of “doctor shopping” for the painkillers Hydrocodone and Oxycodone. She used TennCare benefits to pay for the clinical visits.
“Prescription drug abuse is a concern of communities throughout the state of Tennessee,” Inspector General Deborah Faulkner said. “With the help of medical providers and our law enforcement partners, the Office of Inspector General is sending a message that abusing TennCare will have serious repercussions.”
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison per charge. District Attorney General Kim Helper is prosecuting 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 1,900 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."