Overton Co. Woman Charged with TennCare Fraud

Friday, December 15, 2017 | 12:21pm
Cecilia Wright

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – An Overton County woman is charged with TennCare fraud in connection with selling prescription drugs she obtained using TennCare healthcare insurance benefits.

The Office of Inspector General (OIG), with the assistance of the Overton County Sheriff’s Office, today announced the arrest of Cecilia A. Wright, 61, of Livingston. She is charged with TennCare fraud in connection with using TennCare benefits to obtain the painkiller Oxycodone, a Schedule II controlled substance, and later selling a portion of the drugs.

“We are cracking down on people who use TennCare to finance their drug habits or put the drugs on the street for others to purchase illegally,” Inspector General Manny Tyndall said. “Local police and providers are committed to helping us eliminate prescription drug abuse, especially when TennCare is involved.”

District Attorney General Bryant C. Dunaway is prosecuting. TennCare fraud is a Class D felony punishable by up to four years in prison per charge.

The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated cases leading to more than $3 million being repaid to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of more than $163.6 million for TennCare, according to latest figures. To date, 2,934 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 800-433-3982 toll-free from anywhere in Tennessee, or visit the website and follow the prompts that read “Report TennCare Fraud.”