The saying of 2020 has quickly become “In these strange and uncertain times” – something that is rooted in a fear of not knowing what the future may hold amidst the global COVID-19 pandemic.
Health insurance has fallen into the category of “unknown” in the minds of some Americans. Thus, the rise of COVID-19 health insurance scams exploiting that uncertainty.
However, health insurance scams are nothing new – they’ve been around for decades. Let’s explore common tactics health insurance scammers have been using and what are the best ways to identify and combat these schemes.
Some Of The Top Health Insurance Scams
Corona Insurance – The most frequent scams take the form of robocalls – currently by selling bogus Corona insurance. They’ll ask you to call a toll free number, and then when you do, a smooth-talking salesman or saleswoman will guide you unknowingly towards the path of convincing you why you need Corona insurance and the “simple steps” to make sure you’re covered.
Free vaccines, special virus tests or kits – They’ll tell you you’re covered through your insurance plan to receive these tests and kits, but then will ask you to confirm your health insurance information with them where they will draw out your personal information in an artful manner.
False Insurance cancellation – A phony insurance agent will call urgently saying that a loved one is sick in the hospital with COVID-19 so your health insurance was cancelled. You can easily reinstate your coverage over the phone, but it must be done quickly.
Senior Scams – Then there is a more common scam for seniors covered by Medicare. Scammers ask for a senior’s medicare numbers, then they will make false claims against the senior’s Medicare account.
Clearly, there are many avenues scammers will take to convince you to trust what they’re saying so you will divulge sensitive personal information. And they’re not just limited to phone calls.
They also will attempt to scam you through email, text message, and even posing as government officials, or claiming to work with your own health insurance company by means of a method called “social engineering”.
Although these may seem quite obvious as scams, the people that do them are very tactful and it is often easy to fall for a bogus health insurance scam, especially through email, text message, or online.
How Do I Confidently Identify A Health Insurance Scam?
One: This may seem obvious, but don’t give money, or especially personal information out over the phone or online unless you are sure exactly who you are giving it to and what you’re getting.
Ask for a copy of the policy you would be purchasing, then read it carefully to ensure that it’s covering what you understood it to cover.
Two: Do research on any health organization you’re required to join to receive your health insurance.
Three: Call your Indiana state insurance department. They will be able to easily identify whether the plan you’re being asked to sign up for is legitimate or not.
Four: Finally, check with your doctors, your pharmacist, and any facilities you use, to be sure your plan is in-network with them.
Are You Confident In Your Health Insurance Coverage?
According to the Federal Trade Commission, federal government employees never call you to update your insurance data. If you suspect something is amiss and you think it’s a scam, you can file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission.
The best way to avoid a scam is to sign up for insurance at work, or at your spouse or parent’s workplace, if you’re eligible.
If not, I would encourage you to reach out to a local health insurance agent that you can trust, like Michael Suhany Insurance. Michael has 20 years of experience working in health insurance and can find the best coverage to fit your specific needs.
Yes, these are very strange and uncertain times. But one thing is certain: When you actually know how your health insurance can cover you today, you can confidently say “no” to fraudulent health insurance scammers, especially when you are able to find a health insurance agent whom you trust. Contact Michael Suhany Insurance today!