Shelby Co. Woman Charged with TennCare Fraud
NASHVILLE – A Shelby County woman living in Mississippi is charged with TennCare fraud for allegedly reporting she lived in Tennessee. The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of 31-year-old Verronya Byrd, charged with TennCare fraud and theft of property.
Investigators allege that Byrd was living in Mississippi when she reported to the state for two years that she had a Tennessee residence so she and her children could remain enrolled in TennCare, the state’s Medicaid program. As a result, TennCare paid more than $14,437 in fees and claims.
“TennCare benefits are designed to assist those who qualify and who reside within the borders of our great state,” Inspector General Kim Harmon said. “The Office of Inspector General strives to protect taxpayers’ hard-earned money and ensure that those who choose to commit fraud will be sought out and prosecuted.”
The theft of services charge is a Class C felony and the TennCare fraud charge is a class D felony. The case is being prosecuted by District Attorney General Amy T. Weirich of Shelby County.
The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated over 5,760 criminal cases leading to more than $10.8 million being repaid to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of more than $163.6 million for TennCare, according to latest figures. TennCare’s budget is comprised of both federal and state dollars, 65% and 35% respectively. To date, 3,136 people have been charged with TennCare fraud.
To access the OIG most wanted list, visit https://www.tn.gov/finance/fa-oig/fa-oig-most-wanted.html. Anyone with information about a wanted subject is urged to use the contact information on the page.
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 or by logging on to www.tn.gov/oig/ and following the prompts that read “Report TennCare fraud.”