Protect yourself from Medicare errors, fraud, and abuse.
Protecting your personal information is the best line of defense in
the fight against health care fraud and abuse. Every day, consumers
get ripped off by scam artists. Medicare and Medicaid lose billions
of dollars each year. You can make a difference!
Here are some ways to take an active role in protecting your health
Treat your Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security numbers like a
credit card number. Never give these numbers to a stranger.
Remember, Medicare doesn’t call or visit to sell you
Don’t carry your Medicare or Medicaid card unless you will
need it. Only take it to doctors' appointments, visits to your hospital,
or clinic or trips to the pharmacy.
Save Medicare Summary Notices and Part D Explanations of Benefits.
Shred the documents when they are no longer useful.
Avoid telephone or email offers of “free” medical tests
or supplies in exchange for a “peek” at your Medicare or
Beware of advertising that promises Medicare will pay for certain
care or devices.
Never sign a blank form. Always read and keep a copy of any document
or agreement you sign.
If you rent medical equipment, such as a walker, return the item to
the medical equipment dealer when you are finished. Always get a dated
receipt for the return.
Beware of offers of TENS units (battery-powered units that send
electrical impulses to reduce pain), nebulizers (breathing machines),
noninvasive blood flow studies, “free” cholesterol checks,
and promises of “stroke prevention.” Rely on your own
doctor’s advice to prescribe appropriate treatment for you.