You may have seen ads on TV or received mailings and emails that tout free Medicare advice or benefits that appear too good to be true. Ads or mailings looking like they are from Medicare seem to circulate all year long.
These marketing campaigns are designed to prompt you to call a phone number, enter an email address, or register for an event to learn more about an advertised plan and ultimately sign up for that plan. It’s important to be skeptical of these claims, and to know what questions to ask when looking at plan choices.
The Medicare program is administered by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Be sure to open any information that comes from the CMS, DHHS and the Social Security Administration.
Additionally, know that it is forbidden by law to use the words or symbols “Medicare,” “Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services,” “Department of Health and Human Services,” or “Health & Human Services” in a way that indicates approval or endorsement on any marketing or non-government correspondence.
Here are some tips to help identify materials that are promotional and do not require your attention:
• The material usually asks you to call, email, send a post card or attend a seminar to learn more about a Medicare plan • The material may use language filled with superlatives such as the best, the most, the least expensive or sometimes the word free which is prohibited and an inaccurate description for Medicare plans
• The material often includes large colorful graphics to grab your attention
• The postage area may be imprinted with “PRESORTED” or “PRSRT STD” which is commonly used for mailing a large quantity of business or advertising mail
• The material states that you requested the information but you did not.
If you receive anything in the mail you are unsure of, please do not hesitate to stop by and see us at Roosevelt County Aging Services or give us a call at 406-653-6221