|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 29, 2011
CONTACT: LOLA POTTER
NASHVILLE – A Robertson County woman is charged with using TennCare public healthcare insurance to pay for fraudulent prescription drugs.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG), with the assistance of the Robertson County Sheriff’s Office, today announced the arrest of Ann M. Choate, 30, of Springfield. She is accused of presenting forged prescriptions on two separate occasions for the painkiller Lortab, using TennCare benefits to pay for the forged prescriptions. Choate faces two counts of TennCare fraud.
“We have a zero tolerance for people who use TennCare to support prescription drug abuse,” Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner said. “We appreciate the hard work of the Robertson County Sheriff’s Office for their assistance on this case and others.”
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison per charge. District Attorney General John W. Carney 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, nearly 1,500 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."