Chattanooga Woman Charged With TennCare "Doctor Shopping"

Thursday, December 20, 2012
Sherry Jennings
Sherry Jennings

A Hamilton County woman is charged with TennCare “doctor shopping,” the crime of going to multiple physicians in a short period of time to obtain controlled substances, and using TennCare as payment. 

The Office of Inspector General (OIG) announced the arrest of Sherry Watts Jennings, 59, of Chattanooga.  She is charged with five counts of fraudulently using TennCare to obtain controlled substances by “doctor shopping” for Hydrocodone and Oxycodone, which are strong pain medications.  The physician office visits were paid for by TennCare.

"We’re committed to getting fraud and abuse out of the TennCare program, especially when it comes to prescription drugs,” Inspector General Deborah Faulkner said.

"We will vigorously investigate and prosecute anyone who abuses or attempts to abuse 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 Bill Cox 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 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."



Alexander: Appropriations Committee Approves Pay Raise For Tennessee Service Members, $900 Million For National Guard Equipment

Senator Lamar Alexander said funding bills for the Department of Defense and the Department of Homeland Security will give pay raises to all U.S. service members and provide $900 million to buy equipment for the National Guard.  Senator Alexander voted to approve the bills which were considered by the Senate Appropriations Committee Thursday. “These appropriations bills ... (click for more)

Alex Womack, 21, Was Motorcyclist Killed Tuesday Night On Lee Highway

Alexander (Alex) Christian Womack, 21, was pronounced dead on the scene of an accident l ate  Tuesday  night . Collegedale Police along with other emergency personnel responded to an accident with injuries at the 10600 block of Lee Highway. Upon arrival, personnel found a motorcyclist, Mr. Womack, had been involved in a crash with another vehicle. The ... (click for more)

Case Handled Like Any Other? - And Response

It is interesting that Chief Fletcher would deem the handling of the Mayor's encounter as typical or normal. Is the Chief asking the public to believe that all misdemeanor domestic violence arrests include a 4-hour taped interrogation, and delayed reporting after a visit to the Chief’s house. Of course, we believe that Chief Fletcher. April Eidson * * *  I ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The American Dream, 2016

On this, the week of commencement, junior high graduations, and achievement at every level is displayed, we stand with hope and wonder as the next wave of promising Americans gives our nation the reason we pray for our next tomorrow. On Monday, as Vice President Joe Biden addressed 950 cadets who would become 2nd Lieutenants by the end of the day at the United States Military ... (click for more)

Baylor Rolls Past St. Benedict In D-II Softball Opener

MURFREESBORO – The Baylor softball team had somewhat of a slow start here at McKnight Field No. 3 Wednesday morning as they began defense of their D-II state softball crown, but they finished on a strong note and that’s probably all that matters at this point. The Lady Red Raiders, improving to 35-4, needed just five innings to slide past St. Benedict as they scored at least ... (click for more)

Brentwood Academy Eliminates McCallie, 5-0, In DII-AA State Baseball

LEBANON, Tenn. – Corbin Brooksbank led off McCallie’s first inning Wednesday evening with a triple to left-center field against Brentwood Academy at Wilson Central High School. Considering the Blue Tornado had just lost about two hours earlier to Christian Brothers, in a replay of the 2015 semifinals, and the long gapper normally would have been a great morale boost. Unfortunately, ... (click for more)