We put a lot of trust in our healthcare providers. After all, they are the people who will determine what kind of care we can receive should we become ill or injured. Unfortunately, people and businesses throughout the healthcare supply chain can engage in acts of fraud and deception.
Below are the most common forms of medical fraud and how you can spot them when they arise.
Medical Equipment Scams
One of the most common forms of healthcare scam is the medical equipment scam. Many suppliers have been known to advertise and offer their products and services for free, only to bill the insurance company in your name for them later. In some cases, the services are never executed to begin with. Always check the number of any medical suppliers you speak to, to ensure you are talking with a legitimate representative.
Phantom billing is perhaps the most common form of healthcare fraud. Phantom billing occurs when a medical provider bills for services that were never rendered. Given how many medical bills are sent from healthcare providers to insurers across America every day without patients ever reviewing them, it is perhaps unsurprising that this type of fraud is rampant.
This fraud is a perfect example where vigilant is the answer. If you are the kind of person who is happy to let other people handle your admin for you, it might be time to rethink your approach. It would certainly be nice if we could all trust our healthcare providers and insurers implicitly. However, the reality is that in America, both insurers and healthcare providers are ultimately businesses. As a result, it is unsurprising that they continue to behave in the name of profits over people. If either institution thinks that they can get away with paying out less money than they have to or receiving more money than they are entitled to, there is a reasonable chance that they will act unethically.
What To Do If You Suspect You Are A Victim
Being a victim of healthcare fraud can be a scary time for a patient. These psychological and financial impacts of many of the scams outlined above can linger with patients for some time. Fortunately, there are dedicated professionals out there willing and able to help anyone who may have been a healthcare fraud victim. This site has a strong healthcare fraud definition that makes it easy to work out whether you are likely to have been defrauded or not.
Unfortunately, medical fraud is always going to exist. Unless there is a significant ground-up reform of the American healthcare system, mas for healthcare fraud incentives will continue to exist. All that patients can do is try to insulate themselves from, these frauds by being vigilant. Even patients who seek out alternative therapies and reject most mainstream medicine can find themselves on the receiving end of healthcare fraud. Therefore, every American must understand the signs of healthcare fraud and what to do if they are victims.