Close-up of mixed race attractive confident adult woman in headset, sitting in office, working as operator of call center or support service, looking directly at the camera and smiling friendlyPrevention education is the best defense in the fight against healthcare fraud and abuse. When there is malicious intent to commit fraud, the Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP) gets involved and works with state and federal partners to report cases for investigation.

SMP Hawaii Volunteer Coordinator Jeff Woodland cites one recent case involving the son of an elderly couple who called the program’s helpline. An imposter had convinced his parents that their bank was under investigation and advised them to transfer their money to a Hong Kong account for safekeeping.

SMP told him to immediately call the police and make a report. Once the case was filed, SMP worked with the family, police and bank officials to freeze the funds. Thankfully, they were able to recover almost all of the money.

Hawai‘i leads the nation in life expectancy at 80.7 years. As this population continues to increase, fraudsters will continue to prey upon our vulnerable older adults with scams that are becoming very sophisticated, ultimately impacting the overall health of older adults.

Volunteer with SMP Hawaii today to help protect our kūpuna! Roles include administrative support, information distribution, counselors, presenters and exhibitors.

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