A medical scam is all too common these days; especially with elderly people. The new Obamacare health laws are not only confusing to the older folks, but also are rife with scam artists trying to take advantage of less savvy consumers.
An example of a scam which ended in tragedy is when Jose and Niasia Cotto lost their son, Josia, to a brainstem tumor.
Two months earlier, a Houston physician had given the Cotto parents hope in exchange for an advance of cash: $25,000 upfront. The couple took Josia to see this doctor who said he could cure inoperable pediatric tumors of the brainstem. It turned out to be a medical scam.
There is a cure rate of 83% of pediatric cancers in the U.S. When it comes to pediatric brainstem tumors, there is usually no hope for kids. 5% of these children survive five years.
The Cottos are now learning more about Burzynski. He is basically a non-board certified physician, with little to no experience in oncology medical treatment, and has allegedly gone public in saying he can cure the pediatric brainstem tumors that other oncologists and surgeons have been unable themselves to cure.
The couple believed in Burzynski’s methods and felt that he could have cured their son, if not for their use of traditional medicine, including having Josia receive chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Jose and Niasia did not see Burzynski’s common medical scam coming. In fact, they were considering a plan to launch a non-profit, A Life for Josia Foundation, to help other children with cancer gain access to Burzynski’s treatment.
Now, Jose and Niasia do not know what to think.
In other medical scam news, older citizens on Medicare have been receiving multiple calls regarding their need for the receipt of a medical card tied to Medicare.
A resident of Plainview, Texas received these calls over a period of time, the final call on Monday afternoon was from someone with a foreign accent. He told her she was to receive a new medical card. When she inquired why she would be receiving one, the caller said it was because she received Social Security.
When the caller asked about her bank information, the resident told him she doesn’t give that kind of information and abruptly hung up.
Criminals are calling seniors claiming to be government officials. They are able to persuade individuals to give them personal information so they can process government benefits. Medical scam artists abuse the enactment of the Affordable Care Act by collecting names, addresses and even banking account numbers from citizens who are not aware of how their information is being used. US citizens are vulnerable when there are major changes in a government policy or when a topic is in the news.
The list goes on and on when it comes to health and medical scams.
Unfortunately, medical scams are becoming all too common and it may be necessary to set up a toll-free line to help the mostly senior citizens who are targeted by these scams. Consumer Fraud Reporting can be accomplished by going online to ConsumerFraudReporting.Org.
Editorial by Lisa M Pickering