By Rick Banas of BMA Management, Ltd.
The scammers are calling and offering free diabetic testing strips.
The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Office of the Inspector General (OIG) recently posted updated information about the scam. You can listen to the Fraud Alert for People with Diabetes podcast by Deputy Inspector General Gary Cantrell or read the transcript by clicking here
In particular, OIG warns folks to be wary of unsolicited phone calls in which the person calling offers you free supplies or offers to waive Medicare co-payments. Medical providers and suppliers are not supposed to call you to offer free Medicare supplies or services.
Also be wary of anybody who calls you and asks for personal, financial or Medicare information.
Erin also noted that the Elgin Police Department in Elgin, Illinois, received a report from an older adult about a phone caller who claimed to be from AT&T. The caller said that the older adult had won 500 free long distance telephone calls for paying bills on time. The caller then told the older adult “let me transfer you to another person to get more information.” Fortunately, the older adult realized that this might be a scam, hung up the phone, and contacted AT&T. The company said that it is not making calls like this and never does.
Remember that if anyone calls you and asks for personal information over the phone, it is probably a scam. Just hang up.
Erin Weir is the Healthcare Consumer Protection Coordinator at Age Options, which serves as the Area Agency on Aging for Suburban Cook County.
“BMA Management is the leading provider of affordable assisted living in Illinois
and one of the 20 largest providers of assisted living in the United States.”