Nebraskans Warned To Be On Alert For Medicare Scams

Armen Hareyan's picture
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Nebraska Medicare Scams

Nebraskans continue to report receiving phone calls from persons identifying themselves as connected with Medicare or other legitimate-sounding healthcare organizations and asking the beneficiary to provide or "verify" personal information, most often bank account numbers.

According to the Nebraska Health and Human Services System (HHSS), a Scottsbluff-area beneficiary recently received two such calls and wisely refused to provide her personal financial information.

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Some Nebraskans who have received these types of calls report that the caller can become insistent or intimidating. However, it's important to keep in mind that receiving an unsolicited call demanding a personal bank account number indicates it's a scam.

"Trust your instincts," advises C.J. Roberts, Regional Long-Term Care Ombudsman, HHSS. "If something doesn't feel or sound right, don't buy it." Roberts adds that if Nebraskans receive a questionable call, especially from someone purporting to represent Medicare, they should refuse to provide any personal or financial information.

Instead, Roberts recommends asking for the caller's name and number, and then checking out the call to verify its legitimacy. Beneficiaries can contact Medicare at 1-800-MEDICARE, the Nebraska SHIIP (Senior Health Insurance Information Program) at 1-800-234-7119, or the Nebraska SMP (formerly the Senior Medicare Patrol) Project in Scottsbluff at 1-877-294-4981 for more information. The Nebraska SMP works to empower seniors to prevent healthcare fraud, and Roberts serves as the SMP Coordinator in western Nebraska.

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