Hawai'i State News

State spreading awareness during Medicare Fraud Prevention Week

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Medicare loses an estimated $60 billion per year to false claims. Join Senior Medicare Patrol Hawai‘i, a program of the Executive Office on Aging, during Medicare Fraud Prevention Week June 3-9 to learn how to stay safe.

Photo from the Senior Medicare Patrol Hawai‘i website.

“Medicare fraud has a devastating impact on older adults as well as the Medicare program,” said Senior Medicare Patrol Hawai‘i Director Norma Kop. “We teach kūpuna how to prevent, detect and report Medicare fraud, errors and abuse. Our counselors help individuals who suspect that their Medicare number has been lost or stolen and used to file false claims.”

One of the easiest ways to learn more about Medicare fraud and how to protect yourself is to request a free “My Health Care Tracker” booklet from Senior Medicare Patrol Hawai‘i to track health services before paying.

The booklet can help you:

  • Log doctor visits, lab tests, X-rays, hospital stays, prescription drugs, supplies and other health services, then use to cross-check with billing statements for accuracy.
  • Only pay for services or supplies your doctor ordered, and you received.
  • Find out if someone has stolen your Medicare number and is sending claims to Medicare for services or supplies fraudulently using your identity and Medicare number.

“During this special week, we’re excited to inform our community on how to detect Medicare fraud, as well as the other services we offer,” Kop said. “It takes our entire state to protect kūpuna, as Hawai‘i continues to lead the nation in average life expectancy. Being proactive and volunteering with [Senior Medicare Patrol Hawai‘i] builds a stronger safety net of support for our loved ones and kūpuna who are most vulnerable and need to protect their identity, assets and legacy.”


Everyone plays a part in the fight against fraud.

Medicare beneficiaries can monitor their insurance statements to make sure products and services received match what they are being billed before they pay.

Caregivers should take notice of items such as knee braces or other durable medical equipment sent to the beneficiary without their doctor’s prescription. Remind loved ones to never give out their Medicare number or personal information.

Families can talk to loved ones about protecting their Medicare number just as they would a credit card number. They can help to create a Medicare.gov account to access Medicare statements online or review the mailed statement.


They can also register their phone number on the “do not call” directory and stop mailings through optoutprescreen.com.

Partners and professionals can share prevention tips with clients and request a free presentation from Senior Medicare Patrol Hawai‘i to hear about the latest scams and to learn more.

Health care providers can talk to patients about common health care related scams such as durable medical equipment and genetic testing schemes. Remind clients that products and services should only be ordered by their physician, and to never order items through unsolicited calls.

Community members can help by looking out for older neighbors and friends. When in the public, take special notice if older individuals are purchasing many gift cards in large denominations. Encourage others to talk to a trusted source to get Medicare answers and spread the word about scams.


Lastly, volunteer today with Senior Medicare Patrol Hawai‘i.

The organization is offering a free webinar via Zoom from 10 to 11 a.m. June 8. The public is invited to attend.

The webinar will focus on Medicare fraud, the latest scams and how to volunteer for Senior Medicare Patrol Hawai‘i.

Call 1-800-296-9422, email info@smphawaii.org or submit a request online to register.

Senior Medicare Patrol Hawai‘i is ready to educate and empower Medicare beneficiaries in the fight against health care fraud.

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