Washington, D. C. – Federal officials have warned of a new scam targeting Medicare enrollees. Scammers are offering “free” genetic tests and claiming Medicare will cover it. If they can get an individual’s Medicare number, they are using it to commit fraud and identity theft. The scammers are targeting potential victims in several ways including through telemarketing calls, health fairs, and even knocking on doors.
Officials reminded everyone that only a doctor you know and trust should order and approve any requests for genetic testing. It is important to understand that if Medicare is billed for a test or screening that was either not medically necessary and/or was not ordered by your doctor, the claim can be denied. When such claims are denied the individual tested could be responsible for the entire cost of the test—which can total thousands of dollars.
To protect yourself, do not give your Medicare, Social security or other personal information to anyone offering a free genetic test and if you get a genetic testing kit in the mail, refuse it. If you suspect Medicare fraud, call 1-800-MEDICARE.