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Officials Warn of Genetic Testing Scams

Fraud schemes involving genetic testing are going on across the country.
July 9, 2019

The Minnesota Department of Commerce has issued a consumer alert regarding fraud schemes involving genetic testing that are going on across the country. Scammers nationwide are offering Medicare beneficiaries cheek swabs for genetic testing to obtain their Medicare information for identity theft or fraudulent billing purposes.

Reports from Kentucky have indicated scammers operating out of vans – offering to pay Medicaid recipients $20 for DNA swabs and their health insurance information, while Nebraska residents have reported scammers conducting group visits to senior living communities – advertised as “DNA checks for cancer.”

The Minnesota Department of Commerce advises:

  • If a genetic testing kit is mailed to you, don’t accept it unless it was ordered by your physician. Refuse the delivery or return it to the sender. Keep a record of the sender's name and the date you returned the items.
  • Be suspicious of anyone who offers you free genetic testing and then requests your Medicare number. If your personal information is compromised, it may be used in other fraud schemes.
  • A physician that you know and trust should approve any requests for genetic testing.
  • Medicare beneficiaries should be cautious of unsolicited requests for their Medicare numbers. If anyone other than your physician’s office requests your Medicare information, do not provide it.
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