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Crime Alert: FBI releases a report showing a spike in health care fraud

NBC

The Federal Bureau of Investigation is reporting a dramatic onslaught of medical fraud cases during the pandemic

PHOENIX, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) - In a report released by the Phoenix office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the number of health care fraud cases skyrocketed during the pandemic.

According to the report in 2019, the FBI's Internet Crime Complaint Center received 657-cases, that number jumped to 1,383 in 2020.

The report also shows that the amount lost also increased dramatically from just over $1 million to $29 million in a year's time. According to the FBI, health care fraud cases have involved medical professionals, patients, and scam artists.

Scam artists are prone to sending phishing emails or calling potential victims offering a free service. That's something that Special Agent Jennifer Schlinz says people need to be overly cautious when it comes to anything free involving their health care.

Special Agent Schlinz says that if anyone offering a free service asks for your insurance information, that service isn't free. She also reminds people to protect their personal and medical information.

The report was released just days before National Report Medicare Fraud Day which falls on September 12th. National Report Medicare Fraud Day was founded in 2017 and can be observed by educating oneself about how to report health care fraud.

Joe Teposte

Award-Winning Photojournalist, News Professional Trainer, Production, Writer, 20+ Years in Yuma News.

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