Friday, September 8 , 2017
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In This Issue
 
Fraud in the News
The following are current news articles about health care and fraud issues.

Consumer Fraud:

Please share this Fraud Alert with colleagues, consumers, or other professionals in your area. If you would like to sign up to receive the Fraud Alert directly, visit click here.
 
This project was supported, in part by grant number 90MP0216, from the U.S. Administration for Community Living, 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 for Community Living policy. 
  

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Dear SMP Readers, 

In this week's Fraud Alert, a new SMP tip sheet and an ad from CMS about the new Medicare card. Also, Fraud Alerts will soon be sent from a new name.
 
New Medicare Card, New SMP Tip Sheet

Have you heard? Every person who has Medicare will be getting a new Medicare card! This change won't happen until April 2018, but the Illinois SMP has a new tip sheet to explain what you need to know now.

Beware of scammers! Any change like this can bring about opportunities for con artists to come up with different schemes to trick consumers. The new Medicare card will be FREE. It will not cost you anything, and you will not have to do anything to receive it. If someone calls you to ask for money in exchange for a new Medicare card, this is a SCAM! Other scams may include fraudsters:  
  • Asking you to confirm your Medicare or Social Security number so they can send you a new card
  • Telling you there is a charge for your new card and they need to verify your personal information
  • Threatening to cancel your health benefits if you don't share your Medicare Number or other personal information
Remember, Medicare will NEVER call you for your Medicare number or to verify personal information. If you receive a call where you are asked for personal information, just hang up and call the Illinois SMP at AgeOptions (800)699-9043. You can read additional information about the new Medicare card in this new SMP tip sheet, New Medicare Cards: What YOU need to know!

Header from the new tip sheet_ _New Medicare Cards_ What You Need to Know__
 
Protect Your Medicare Card
 
As we said in the article above, scam artists are always looking for new opportunities to steal your Medicare number so they can commit Medicare fraud and steal your identity. In 2018, all people on Medicare will be assigned a new Medicare number (on the new cards that will be mailed to them). Unlike the current number, this will not be a Social Security number, so as to help protect your identity.
 
Until you receive your new Medicare card in the mail, you want to protect your identity by protecting your Medicare card and number. Treat it like you would a credit card. Don't keep your card in your wallet, and only give your Medicare number to those who should have it, such as your known health care providers. You may see this CMS ad on TV. 

CMS TV Ad

CMS TV Ad "Guard Your Card"
 
New Name in Your Inbox, Same Fraud Alert
 
The above articles were written by Peg Tully. Many of you may know Peg from her work  with the Illinois SMP program at AgeOptions for the last 7 years . If you don't know her name already, you soon will because future Fraud Alerts will come from "Peg Tully." 

While this is the last Fraud Alert sent from "Jason Echols," I am still here at AgeOptions and have the great privilege of working with Peg and our phenomenal SMP Team. I know Peg will do a great job with the Fraud Alert emails, and I appreciate her writing this one. Thank you all! -Jason
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 peggy.tully@ageoptions.org