Written by Missouri SMP
Empowering Seniors to Prevent Healthcare Fraud
Beware of the cold sales call – on the phone or on your doorstep. The Missouri Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP) wants to remind you that Medicare will not call you out of the blue asking for your Social Security, Medicare or banking information.
Medicare has strict rules regulating companies who sell Medicare Advantage plans – also known as Medicare replacement plans – and those rules do not allow for cold sales calls. If you already are enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan, then that plan may call you, however.
The key is to know what you have now – original Medicare with a Part D plan and perhaps a supplemental plan OR an Advantage plan that replaces original Medicare.
Open enrollment for Medicare begins Oct. 15th. That’s when you will be able to evaluate the coverage you have now and whether you want to change it. Special circumstances allow for a special enrollment at other times.
Medicare coverage can be confusing, which is why the Missouri SMP assists beneficiaries, their families, and caregivers to prevent, detect, and report health care fraud, errors, and abuse.
The Missouri State Health Insurance Program (SHIP), known as CLAIM, is here to answer Medicare insurance questions and help you with enrollment as well. These resources can be trusted.
If you receive an unexpected phone call about your Medicare coverage, do NOT give any information to the caller. If you have questions, call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) or the Missouri CLAIM at 1-800-390-3330. To learn more or report suspected Medicare fraud, call the Missouri SMP at 1-888-515-6565.
This project was supported, in part by grant number 90MPPG0040, from the U.S. Administration for Community Living, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C. 20201. Grantees undertaking projects under government sponsorship are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. Points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official Administration for Community Living policy.