NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A Williamson County woman is ordered to repay the state after she was charged with TennCare fraud and theft of services.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG) today announced that Heidi Smith, 43, was convicted in Williamson County, where she was accused of enrolling in TennCare by falsely reporting her household income. Smith is ordered to repay the state a total of $44,404.73 for benefits received while she, her husband and their five children were on the program.
“We appreciate the perseverance of the Williamson County District Attorney General’s Office in bringing prosecution of TennCare fraud to the forefront in their local community,” Inspector General Kim Harmon said. “Our office will continue to do our part and preserve the integrity of TennCare benefits, so that those truly deserving of and eligible for TennCare have the best resources.”
The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Carlin C. Hess.
The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated more than 5,760 criminal cases leading to more than $10.8 million ordered in restitution to TennCare. This has helped lead to a total estimated cost avoidance of more than $163.6 million for TennCare, according to the latest figures. To date, 3,092 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 or by logging on to www.tn.gov/tnoig/ and following the prompts that read “Report TennCare fraud.”