Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Lawrence County woman charged with TennCare fraud in Maury County

Press release from Officer of Inspector General

A Lawrence County woman is charged in Maury County with doctor shopping for prescription drugs, using TennCare as payment for the pills.

The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of Crystal Michelle Clifton, 36, of Loretto. She is charged with TennCare fraud involving doctor shopping, which is using TennCare to visit multiple healthcare providers within a short time period to obtain prescriptions drugs; in this case, the painkiller Hydrocodone. She is charged with two counts of TennCare fraud by doctor shopping.

“Illegally obtaining prescriptions is a crime we are doggedly pursuing,” Inspector General Kim Harmon said. “Fortunately, Tennessee laws deter TennCare benefits from being used to fund the opioid epidemic.”

District Attorney General Brent Cooper is prosecuting. TennCare fraud is a Class D felony punishable by up to four years in prison.

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, 2,987 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.”




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