Dyersburg doctor faces fraud, drug charges

(WMC-TV) – A Dyersburg doctor is facing a long list of charges including illegally prescribing controlled substances.

The Tennessee Department of Health says the only reason Dr. Debra McKenzie is still able to practice in Dyersburg is because there is currently no state law that prompts action against someone's medical license if they are facing charges.

Indicted on one count of TennCare fraud, one count of insurance fraud and one count of improperly prescribing a controlled substance, McKenzie had very little to say about the charges when she was confronted by an Action News 5 camera.

Instead of answering questions, she kicked the Action News 5 camera out of her office.

"TBI began investigating Dr. McKenzie in March 2008 after a former employee made accusations against her to law enforcement authorities," said TBI spokesperson Kristin Helm.

McKenzie practices at McKenzie Medical Clinic on Lake Road in Dyersburg, where investigators say she specializes in obstetrics and gynecology, but she routinely treats patients for conditions outside her specialty.

The TBI conducted undercover visits to McKenzie's practice.

"The agent was able to obtain prescriptions from Dr. McKenzie for narcotic medications without undergoing any type of medical examination," Helm said.

McKenzie is also accused of billing TennCare and insurance companies for services she did not provide to patients.

"Through the course of the investigation TBI also worked with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Tennessee with some auditing that they did of some billing practices," Helm said.

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