FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A Giles County man is charged with TennCare doctor shopping for a second time this summer. Doctor shopping involves visiting multiple doctors in a short period of time – less than a month – to obtain controlled substances, and using TennCare healthcare insurance to pay for the visits, the prescriptions, or both.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG), with the assistance of the Maury County Sheriff’s Office, today announced the arrest of 49-year old Woodrow Beddingfield, of Pulaski. He is charged in a Maury County indictment with using TennCare to doctor shop for the same or similar controlled substances, with TennCare paying for either the clinical visit or the prescriptions.
He was just arrested in July on another indictment in Giles County charging him doctor shopping and obtaining a controlled substance by fraud.
“Tennessee consistently ranks high among states for prescription drug use,” Acting Inspector General Lawrence S. Saylor, Jr., said. “While many people legitimately need these drugs from time to time, we’re committed to eliminating the incidence of people fraudulently obtaining drugs and letting TennCare pick up the tab.”
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony, carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison. District Attorney General Mike Bottoms 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 TennCare, according to latest figures. To date, 2,159 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."