Protecting yourself from Medicare fraud
Anyone on Medicare is at risk of Medicare-related fraud. Watch out for scammers who steal Medicare numbers and other personal information to exploit beneficiaries’ benefits.
Broadly speaking, Medicare fraud occurs when someone makes false claims for healthcare services, procedures and equipment in order to obtain Medicare payments. Medicare fraud costs taxpayers billions of dollars and puts the health and welfare of beneficiaries at risk.
How to spot Medicare scams
There are many types of Medicare scams — taking the form of unsolicited emails, phone calls, text messages, social media posts and phony websites.
Scammers often claim to be from the Medicare office, an insurance company or a government office. They’ll ask for your personal and financial information, such as your Medicare or Social Security number, so that they can submit false claims for payment.
Remember that Medicare will never call, text, email or contact you through social media asking for your Medicare number.
To protect yourself from potential fraudsters:
- Guard your Medicare number just like your Social Security card and credit card.
- Share your Medicare number only with trusted healthcare providers.
- Review your Medicare statements, watch for services billed that look suspicious, and ask questions if something looks wrong.
How to report scammers
If you or someone you know have experienced Medicare fraud or suspect an offer you’ve received is a scam, report it as soon as possible.
To learn more about Medicare fraud, visit Medicare’s Fraud and Abuse page. To report potential Medicare fraud, call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) or report the scam to the Federal Trade Commission at ReportFraud.ftc.gov.
Information provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.