Medicare and Medicaid Precautions

Due to recently reported attempts to defraud some Medicare beneficiaries Southwest Virginia Community Health Systems would like to share advice from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Con artists may try to obtain your Medicare Number or other personal information so that they may steal your identity and/or commit Medicare fraud. Medicare fraud results in higher healthcare costs and taxes for everyone.

Protect yourself from Medicare fraud. Remember to treat your Medicare card just as you would a credit card.


  • Medicare will never contact you for your Medicare Number or other personal information unless you have given them permission in advance.
  • Medicare will never call you to sell you anything.
  • You may receive calls from people promising you things if you give them a Medicare Number. Don’t do it.
  • Medicare will never visit you at your home.
  • Medicare can’t enroll you over the phone unless you called them first.

Additional Precautions:


  • Protect your Medicare Number and your Social Security Number
  • Use a calendar to record all your doctor appointments and any appointments and tests you get.
  • Know what Medicare plan can and can’t do before you join.
  • Review your Medicare claims and Medicare Notices for any services billed to your Medicare Number that you don’t recognize.
  • Be as alert as you can beand learn more about Medicare and recent scams by periodically reviewing relevant portions of the Medicare web site.


Never give your Medicare card, Medicare number, Social Security card, or Social Security number to anyone except your doctor or people you know should have it.

Never accept offers of money or gifts (such as medical equipment) or free medical care.

Never allow anyone except your doctors or other Medicare providers to review your medical records or recommend services.

Never contact your doctor to request a service that you, or your doctor, feel you do not need.

Report anything suspicious to Medicare. If you suspect fraud, call 1-800-Medicare to report your concerns.