Medicare beneficiaries targeted in fraud schemes using genetic testing, authorities warn

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Inspector General is warning Medicare beneficiaries to beware of scammers offering genetic testing as a ruse for identity theft.

The Inspector General's office says the scammers target Medicare beneficiaries through telemarketing calls, booths at public events, health fairs and door-to-door visits. They offer the recipient a cheek swab under the guise of genetic testing and then use it to obtain your Medicare information for identity theft or fraudulent billing purposes.

If you receive a genetic testing kit in the mail, don't accept it unless it was ordered by your physician, the Inspector General's office says. Refuse the delivery, return it to the sender and keep a record of the sender's name and the date you returned the kit.

Additionally, be wary of anyone who offers you free genetic testing and asks for your Medicare number. That information should only be shared with your doctor's office.

If you think you've been a victim of Medicare fraud, contact the Inspector General's hotline.
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