A woman from DeKalb County has been charged with TennCare fraud related to selling prescription drugs in Macon County that were paid for by TennCare.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced the arrest of 24-year old Jamie Kay Hatcher, of Smithville. The arrest was the result of a joint effort with the 15th Judicial District Drug Task Force. She turned herself in at the Macon County Sheriff’s Office.
An indictment accuses her of fraudulently obtaining a prescription for the painkiller Hydrocodone on two separate occasions using TennCare to pay for the prescriptions, and then selling a portion of the pills.
“The illegal trafficking of prescription drugs is a problem we’re dealing with in Tennessee, just as other states try to tackle the problem,” Inspector General Deborah Y. Faulkner said. “But in TennCare, people who participate in selling drugs paid for by taxpayers should understand that we are vigorously enforcing the state laws we’ve worked for that make this a serious crime.”
TennCare fraud is a Class E felony carrying a sentence of up to two years in prison per charge. District Attorney General Tom P. Thompson is prosecuting.
The OIG, a law enforcement agency separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has worked cases leading to the arrest of almost 700 individuals for TennCare fraud, with over $800,000 paid in restitution to TennCare, and total estimated cost avoidance in TennCare of over $75 million, according to latest figures.
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.tncarefraud.tennessee.gov and follow the prompts that read "Report TennCare Fraud".