CINCINNATI, Nov. 9, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — The Ohio-based Pro Seniors, a non-profit organization dedicated to advice, representation and justice for seniors in Ohio, recently announced its Medicare Fraud of the Month for November, Medicare Open Enrollment Scams.
This focus on fraud is a component of the Ohio Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP), the definitive resource for Ohio’s senior citizens and caregivers to detect, prevent, and report healthcare fraud, errors, and abuse. Pro Seniors is Ohio’s grantee/administrator for this Federal Program
“While the Open Enrollment time of the year can be very hectic and even overwhelming, don’t forget to watch out for scams as you look for your best health coverage options. Open Enrollment can quickly become ‘Open Season’ for scammers,” announced Cathy Rafales, Project Manager for the Ohio Senior Medicare Patrol.
Medicare Open Enrollment is an annual period during which Medicare beneficiaries can make changes to their health and prescription drug plans. It’s an opportunity to review and adjust your coverage to ensure it aligns with your healthcare needs and budget. In 2023, this period runs from October 15th to December 7th, with any changes made taking effect on January 1st of 2024.
Rafales advises seniors to beware of the following typical Medicare Enrollment Scams:
Watch out for callers or other people who:
- Claim they work with Medicare, are an “official Medicare agent,” or “represent Medicare.” There are no Medicare representatives and Medicare will never cold-call you.
- Say your Medicare Card is expiring and you will incur a fine for using an expired card. Medicare cards do not expire.
- Say that Medicare is issuing new cards and you must get a new one. Medicare is not issuing new cards.
- Ask for personal information, such as your Medicare number, Social Security number and/or bank information. Government agencies will not ask for your personal information, and will not cold-call you.
“If you suspect your Medicare number has been compromised, think you’ve verified your Medicare number to a caller, or if you have questionable charges on your Medicare Summary Notice or Explanation of Benefits, reach out to the Ohio Senior Medicare Patrol today. Call 800-293-4767 for free. We can help check your Medicare account for suspected fraud,” Rafales added. “We also report fraud to the HHS Office of the Inspector General to help track down scammers and put them in jail.”
About the Ohio Senior Medicare Patrol
The Ohio Senior Medicare Patrol is part of the non-profit group Pro Seniors, Inc and is funded through a grant from the Administration for Community Living. We are fraud fighters helping to protect Medicare beneficiaries from medical identity fraud and stay safe from scammers. You can contact us at 800-293-4767 or learn more at www.proseniors.org/ohio-smp.
About Pro Seniors, Inc
Pro Seniors is an Ohio-based non-profit organization that provides education, advice, advocacy, representation, and justice for seniors in Ohio. Our three programs – Legal Services, Ombudsman and Senior Medicare Patrol – are provided at no cost to clients. If you are concerned about how your elderly aunt is being treated in a nursing home, or worried that your adult children may be stealing your savings, or think you have fraudulent charges on your Medicare account, we can help. Contact us at 800-488-6070 or learn more at www.proseniors.org.
SOURCE Pro Seniors
Originally published at https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/scammers-target-older-adults-during-medicare-open-enrollment-season-301983616.html
Images courtesy of https://pixabay.com