Friday June 15, 2012
Please share this Fraud Alert with colleagues, consumers, or other professionals in your area. If you have any questions about the Illinois SMP program, or to receive these Fraud Alerts directly, please contact Erin Weir, Healthcare Consumer Protection Coordinator at AgeOptions.
This project was supported in part by grant numbers 90MP0026 and 90MP0127 from the U.S. Administration on Aging, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C. 20201. Grantees undertaking projects under government sponsorship are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. Points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official Administration on Aging policy.
Fraud In The News
The following are current news articles about health care and fraud issues.
Health Care Fraud:
- “Kazakh Man Admits Medicare Fraud in St. Louis” (STLToday.com)
Dear SMP readers,
I am pleased to let all of you know that we have found a new statewide coordinator for the SMP Program. Jason Echols, our SMP Volunteer Specialist, will be assuming the role of Health Care Consumer Protection Coordinator at AgeOptions and will be overseeing the ongoing work of the SMP program. Therefore, this will be the last Fraud Alert email that you receive from me – please make sure that Jason’s email () does not go into your Spam box; he will be sending Fraud Alerts in the future.
Have a great weekend!
What you will find in this week’s Fraud Alert
- Home Visitors Ask for Medicare Number
- Scammer Claims to be From WellCare to Obtain Medicare Information
AgeOptions received a complaint this week from a man who was approached in his front yard by two men. The men said that they were there to talk with him about his Medicare. They went inside the man’s home, and they asked him if he had Medicare Part A, B, C, and D. They also asked to see his Medicare card. These visitors did not leave any information behind, so the man does not know who they were, or what they may do with his information. Please remind your clients and loved ones to NEVER give out personal information to anyone who calls on the phone or comes to the door, no matter who they say they are or where they claim to be from. Your Medicare number is a Social Security number, so it is very important to protect that number – if people obtain it, they can use it to steal your identity!
Scammer Claims to be from Wellcare to Obtain Medicare Information
We received another report last week from the Springfield area that Medicare beneficiaries have been receiving phone calls from someone who claims to work for WellCare. The caller asks the beneficiaries for their Medicare number over the phone. When these beneficiaries contacted WellCare, they found that this person in fact does not work for WellCare at all, and that WellCare employees will never ask a beneficiary for their Medicare number when they call someone on the phone. Again – NEVER give personal information to anyone who calls on the phone or comes to the door. The only time it is okay to give someone your Medicare number on the phone is if you call them – that is the only way to know for sure who you are speaking to!
Erin Weir, MSW, LSW, Healthcare Consumer Protection Coordinator
1048 Lake Street, Suite 300
Oak Park, IL 60301
phone (708)383-0258 fax (708)524-0870
AgeOptions, the Area Agency on Aging of Suburban Cook County, is committed to improving the quality of life and maintaining the dignity of older adults and those who care about them – through leadership and support, community partnerships, comprehensive services, accurate information and powerful advocacy.
Fraud Alerts contain information about current scams taking place in Illinois, announcements and updates about programs or services related to health care and/or fraud protection, and links to news articles about health care and fraud topics. Please forward any recommendations or announcements that you would like to be included in a future Fraud Alert to .