Two Mid-State Residents Charged with TennCare Fraud
NASHVILLE, TN – Two mid-state residents are charged with TennCare “doctor shopping,” in separate cases out of Rutherford County.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG), with assistance from the Cannon County Sheriff’s Office and the Woodbury Police Department, today announced the arrests of Kimberly Besner, 38, of Murfreesboro and William K. Bryant, 46, of Woodbury.
Besner is charged with three counts of fraudulently using TennCare to obtain controlled substances by “doctor shopping” for controlled substances. Bryant is charged with two counts of “doctor shopping” for controlled substances. Both Besner and Bryant used TennCare to pay for the doctor’s visit or the drugs.
“We’re very grateful for the assistance we receive from local police as well as pharmacies and providers who all want to bring an end to the abuse of TennCare, especially in the area of prescription drugs,” Inspector General Deborah Faulkner said. “We continue to pursue people who commit these crimes to get the message out that we do not tolerate this type of abuse of the TennCare program.”
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison per charge. District Attorney General William Whitesell, Jr. 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, over 1,700 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."