You should be suspicious if the provider tells you that:
- The test is free; he only needs your Medicare number for his records.
- Medicare wants you to have the item or service.
- They know how to get Medicare to pay for it.
- The more tests they provide the cheaper they are.
- The equipment or service is free; it won't cost you anything.
Be suspicious of providers that:
- Routinely waive copayments without checking on your ability to pay.
- Advertise "free" consultations to Medicare beneficiaries.
- Claim they represent Medicare.
- Use pressure or scare tactics to sell you high priced medical services or diagnostic tests.
- Bill Medicare for services you do not recall receiving.
- Use telemarketing and door-to-door selling as marketing tools.
Be suspicious of:
- Home health providers that offer non-medical transportation services or housekeeping as Medicare approved services.
- Physicians who bill Medicare for telephone calls, conferences with the family, or scheduled but not kept appointments.
- Physicians who bill Medicare for routine check-up.
- Ambulance companies that bill Medicare for routine trips to a doctor's office.
- Physicians that give the wrong diagnosis on the claim form so Medicare will pay.
- Ambulance companies that bill for trips which are not emergency in nature.
- Home health providers that bill for patients who are not confined to their home.
- Home health providers bill for Medicare patients who still drive an automobile.
- Suppliers that bill Medicare for medical equipment for beneficiaries in nursing home.
- Hospital providers that bill Medicare for tests you received as an inpatient or within 72 hours of admission or discharge.