Law enforcement agencies across the nation report a surge in recent years in an activity known as "doctor shopping." That's when a person goes from doctor to doctor in an effort to get multiple prescriptions for what are most often powerful painkillers and sedatives. In some cases, the person who is doctor shopping is addicted to the drugs. In other cases, the person is engaged in drug trafficking either directly or as a buyer for a group that will later sell the illegally obtained narcotics.
The Clarksville Leaf-Chronicle reports that a Tennessee man, 39, faces charges in Montgomery County of TennCare fraud for allegedly going from doctor to doctor to illegally secure multiple prescriptions.
The Stewart County man is charged with doctor shopping in order to get Oxycodone and morphine prescriptions. His doctor visits were reportedly paid for by TennCare.
The Inspector General said, "This type of criminal activity is serious business, but the Office of Inspector General is going after these cases in all 95 counties in Tennessee."
She said health care providers and health care employees are constantly looking for people who might be trying to illegally obtain drugs through TennCare.
The Big Rock man was arrested when he appeared in a Stewart County courtroom on unrelated charges, officials said.
He was taken into custody and then transported to Montgomery County, where he was booked into the county jail.
If convicted, he faces a possible two years in state prison for fraud against TennCare.
It isn't clear if he will face additional charges for drug sales or other related charges.
Source: Clarksville Leaf-Chronicle, "Big Rock man charged with TennCare 'doctor shopping'," May 14, 2012