NHT

These services are provided to assist and promote the well-being and independence of our Seniors.

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back
Scammers Prepare to Target Seniors as Government Readies New Medicare Cards

It seemed like a good idea: Congress passed legislation back in 2015 that required the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to stop using Social Security numbers on seniors’ Medicare cards and start using a new, randomly-generated 11-digit number to identify each Medicare participant. The concept was to deter fraud by getting valuable Social Security numbers off Medicare cards and providing new cards and numbers to every single Medicare participant. All 58 million of them.

Unfortunately, ever-creative and flexible scammers will certainly soon start trying to exploit the switchover to new cards. Scammers have an arsenal of traditional weapons at their disposal but they’re most likely to employ one or more of the following:

• Make telephone calls masquerading as a government official to “inform” seniors of the card switchover and “explain” that they just need to “update” their information in order for the senior to get the new Medicare card. Reality: CMS will mail new Medicare cards to all Medicare participants automatically—participants need not do anything or pay anything in order to receive their new card.

• Make telephone calls pretending to be staff at your doctor’s office and asking for the new Medicare number “just to update our records” or “ensure correct billing.”

• Set up desks at local health fairs and offer “freebies” like nutritional supplements in exchange for seniors’ new Medicare numbers and other personal information.

What’s the harm in providing your Medicare number or other personal information? Simple: scammers can exploit your Medicare number to fraudulently bill Medicare for expensive healthcare equipment they never provided (think power wheelchairs or complex braces and splints). Then if you someday need similar equipment, CMS may refuse to supply it on the grounds that you’ve already received it (!).

How to protect yourself against the scammers? Remember a few fundamental rules:

• Safeguard your Medicare number! Treat your Medicare card and number (both your current and the forthcoming new one) like you would a credit card. Only give them directly to your healthcare providers!

• Remember that CMS will contact you only through written, mailed letters. CMS won’t call you, much less ask for your Medicare number or other personal information over the phone!

• Know that anyone requesting your Medicare number over the telephone is probably a scammer.
So just hang up!

MEDICAL EQUIPMENT

Medical equipment can be costly. The COA has equipment available to seniors of Nahant. Before you purchase medical equipment contact the COA at 1 (781) 581-7557

Here is what we have: Walkers, toilet seats, shower chairs, crutches and canes. We have a limited supply of wheelchairs. We keep 2 at the center and loan them out for short durations.

If you have any medical equipment you would like to donate such as wheelchairs, walkers, canes, etc, please donate it today! You may contact us regarding that here.
Additional equipment is available through Mass Rehabilitation Commission. Information is available on their website: www.dmeREquipment.org

OTHER RESOURCES

Medical Alert Systems
SOCIAL ACTIVITIES

Please click here for our social calendar, and please check back often as we update monthly!

OTHER COMMUNITY PROGRAMS
  • Nahant Police Department has several services which assist in helping locals.
  • Greater Lynn Senior Services
  • GLSS (Greater Lynn Senior Services) is a wonderful resource for seniors and their families, along with information and referrals.
  • Bus Transportation
  • The Nahant COA has a bus that will pick up seniors and bring them to lunch at the Tiffany Room along with local trips to planned activities, shopping, and more
KEY RESOURCES

For Seniors
Elder Abuse Hotline
1-800-922-2275 (V/TDD)
Domestic Violence Hotline
877-785-2020
Alzheimers Association
24/7 Helpline: 800-272-3900
All Care VNA
All Care Hospice
GLSS (Greater Lynn Senior Services) 781-599-0110
Hospice & Palliative Care 888-283-1722
Massachusetts Council on Aging
The National Council on Aging
MBTA’s The Ride 888-844-0355
Administration for Community Living (ACL)
Social Security Information
Medicare & Medicaid Assistance Program
Protective Services
1-800-AGE-INFO
1-800-243-4636 or TDD/TTY 1-800-872-0166
Prescription Advantage
1-877-610-0241 (TTY)
Executive Office of Elder Affairs
1-617-727-7750
ONLINE RESOURCES

Chronic Pain, Addiction & Treatment
Behavioral Health Treatment Services Locator
Senior Drug Abuse Info
Care Giver Substance Abuse Info
Other Useful Links
Mass Options - Your Link To Community Services
Assisted Living Ultimate Guide
Healthline: Early Warning Signs of Dementia
Mesothelioma Guide
 
 
The Massachusetts Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP) Program 
A statewide partnership between community based organizations and mainstream agencies. Our objective is to reach and educate Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, family members, caregivers, and professionals on the importance of being engaged healthcare consumers to prevent healthcare errors, and abuse. New Medicare Card information is here.