Action Line: Beware of healthcare scams during open enrollment period

Action Line

With 2020 right around the corner, now is your chance to change your health coverage. As you compare your options through Medicare or the Affordable Care Act, watch out for scams that can lead to identity theft.

Roseann Freitas, BBB Hawaii Marketplace Manager: “If someone calls you and says, ‘hey I’m an official Medicare agent, I can help you fill out an enrollment,’ that’s a red flag. Medicare does not have any official agents.” 

Ignore anyone who says you must join a prescription drug plan to keep your benefits. This is a scam, and enrolling in the plan is voluntary through Medicare. Also, never give information over the phone to someone who says they need it so you can keep your health coverage. 

Freitas: “If they’ve called you and started to ask you for your personal information, now they’re wanting you to give them payment very quickly or they actually start to threaten you with your medicare benefits. That’s not something Medicare will do, and you need to stop and hang up the phone.” 

If you apply with the Affordable Care Act, you may get a call asking you to verify your information. If you don’t want to answer questions over the phone, you have other options. 

Freitas: “If you’re not comfortable, it is okay to say I’m not comfortable giving out that information over the phone, please send me the application in the mail, and they will send it to you.” 
If you have a concern or are interested in becoming an Action Line volunteer, give us a call Monday through Friday at 591-0222. You can also send an email to actionline@khon2.com.

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