Date: June 28, 2017 | Category: News
This month, the Missouri SMP (Senior Medicare Patrol) wants you to remind you to rely on your instincts when it comes to considering this question: Does something just seem off? This question is particularly important when it comes to Durable Medical Equipment – things like wheelchairs, scooters, diabetic shoes and back braces.
These areas are particularly susceptible to fraud, which costs taxpayers BILLIONS of dollars each year.
In some cases, companies have recruited patients and then billed Medicare for more expensive equipment than they delivered. They might bill for a motorized wheelchair when a scooter was actually delivered. The durable medical equipment companies have received fraudulent authorization forms from physicians involved in the scheme. Physicians have sold fraudulent prescriptions, authorization forms, and patient information to DME companies.
As a patient and a Medicare beneficiary, you can guard against this fraud. Work with your regular doctor. If you think you need a back brace, contact your trusted primary care physician. You and your doctor are the ones that discuss what type of durable medical equipment might help you. Decline offers you get in the mail, on the phone, in the shopping malls, or at a free dinner. If something seems off, then it probably is.
As always, report suspected Medicare fraud to the Missouri SMP at (888) 515-6565. SMPs are funded through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Community Living, Administration on Aging.