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4R's for Fighting Medicare Fraud

Medicare beneficiaries are the first line of defense against Medicare fraud and abuse. Here are some ways Medicare beneficiaries can protect themselves, their loved ones, and Medicare from fraud.

 

1. Record

Record the dates of doctor's appointments on a calendar. Note the tests and services received and save the receipts and statements from providers. Be sure to record the dates and services.

2. Review

Look for signs of faud, including claims not recognized on the "Medicare Summary Notices" (MSNs), and advertisements or phone calls from companies offering free items or services to people with Medicaire. Compare the Dates and services with the MSNs to make sure each service was listed and that all details are correct. If items listed in the claims are not in the record, it is possible that a Medicare beneficiary or Medicare may have been billed for services or items not received. If a Medicare beneficiary is in a Medicare Advantage Plan (like an HMO or PPO) or Medicare Prescription Drug Plan, call the plan for more information about a claim.

3. Report

Report suspected Medicare fraud by calling 1-800-MEDICARE. When using the automated phone system, have the Medicare card available and clearly speak or enter the Medicare number and letter(s). If errors are identified or fraud is suspected, the Area Agency on Aging can help make a report to Medicare.

4. Remember

Medicare beneficiaries should always protect their Medicare number. Never give out a Medicare number in exchange for a special offer. Medicare or Social Security will never contact a Medicare beneficiary by telephone and ask for personal information, like Medicare, Social Security, or bank account numbers. Never allow someone else to use the Medicare card, and never use another person's card.

 

To learn more about Medicare fraud and how to protect against Medicare fraud, call the Area Agency on Aging at 432-563-1061 or 1-800-491-4636.(www.medicare.gov/publications)