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|MARSHALL COUNTY WOMAN CHARGED WITH TENNCARE "DOCTOR SHOPPING"|
NASHVILLE, TN – A Marshall County woman is charged with TennCare fraud involving “doctor shopping,” or using TennCare to go to multiple doctors to obtain controlled substances.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of Amanda Gayle Tomas, 30, of Lewisburg. Tomas is charged with three counts of “doctor shopping,” using TennCare to pay for doctor’s office visits. Tomas turned herself in at the Marshall County Sheriff’s Office.
“The unauthorized use and abuse of prescription drugs is a problem that communities, law enforcement and providers are serious about eliminating, especially when state funding is involved,” Inspector General Deborah Faulkner said. “The Office of Inspector General is committed to ensuring that TennCare benefits are used appropriately – TennCare fraud is a crime and the OIG will enforce the law to the fullest extent.”
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison per charge. District Attorney General Robert Carter 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."