RIO GRANDE VALLEY--Medicare open enrollment starts Sunday.
The office of the inspector general for the Department of Health and Human Services is warning consumers to be on the lookout for medical identity theft.
Medical identity theft happens when someone uses your personal information to make fraudulent health care claims. Thieves look for your social security number, name and or medicare number. Officials urge you to protect your personal information. You can do so by checking medical bills and statements and reporting questionable charges or fraud.
"I got a call one evening. A man told me I was approved for a back brace through Medicare. All he needed was my numbers, and I gave him my Medicare number and my debit card number," said one victim from Arkansas.
If you think you've been a victim, you can report it by calling 1-800-447-8477 (1-800-HHS-TIPS).
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