Written by Missouri SMP

The Missouri Senior Medicare Patrol wants older adults and their caregivers to be on the lookout for potential COVID-19 vaccine fraud and scams. 

Here are some tips to protect yourself from potential vaccine fraud: 

•You likely will not need to pay anything out of pocket to get the vaccine during this public health emergency. 

•You cannot pay to put your name on a list to get the vaccine. 

•You cannot pay to get early access to the vaccine. 

•No one from Medicare or the health department will contact you. 

•No one from a vaccine distribution site or health care payer, like a private insurance company, will call you asking for your Social Security number or your credit card or bank  account information to sign you up to get the vaccine. 

•Beware of providers offering other products, treatments, or medicines to prevent the virus. Check with your health care provider before paying for or receiving any COVID-19-related treatment. 

•If you get a call, text, email — or even someone knocking on your door — claiming they can get you early access to the vaccine, stop. That’s a scam. 

The Missouri SMP is a non-profit agency that empowers and assists Medicare beneficiaries  to prevent, detect and report healthcare fraud, errors and abuse. Medicare fraud and abuse costs taxpayers an estimated $60 billion-plus annually. 

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.

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