Rhea County Woman Charged with TennCare Fraud
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A Rhea County woman is charged with TennCare fraud for falsely reporting income and marriage status in order to obtain TennCare benefits.
The Office of Inspector General (OIG), with the assistance of the Rhea County Sheriff’s Office, today announced the arrest of Maura L. Stewart, 42, of Knoxville. She is charged with TennCare fraud and theft of services in connection with under reporting her total income and not reporting her marriage in order to obtain TennCare benefits.
“If you have other resources but cheat the system to get healthcare benefits from taxpayers, you’re going to get caught,” Inspector General Manny Tyndall said. “We’ve got open cases in almost every county in Tennessee – where we are pursuing and prosecuting these cases.”
District Attorney General J. Michael Taylor is prosecuting. TennCare fraud is a Class D felony punishable by up to four years in prison.
The OIG, which is separate from TennCare, began full operation in February 2005 and has investigated cases leading to more than $3 million being repaid to TennCare, with a total estimated cost avoidance of more than $163.6 million for TennCare, according to latest figures. To date, 2,901 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 visit the website and follow the prompts that read “Report TennCare Fraud.”