New Yorkers on public health insurance plans are being warned about a scam in which fraudsters are demanding payments to maintain their healthcare coverage. Attorney General Letitia James and Acting Department of Health Commissioner Dr. James McDonald alerted the public to the scam, which preys on those needing to renew their Medicaid eligibility or find a new insurance plan in the coming months.
With the expiration of a pandemic-era allowance that suspended eligibility reviews for Medicaid, Child Health Plus, and the Essential Plan, an unprecedented number of recipients are now potentially at risk of losing coverage. Scammers have been exploiting this situation by threatening New Yorkers with cancellation or loss of their Medicaid benefits unless they pay hundreds of dollars.
To help consumers navigate this issue, James and McDonald stressed that Medicaid-administering New York agencies will never charge for enrolment or re-enrollment. Tips provided include seeking free renewal assistance through the New York State of Health platform or county’s Medicaid office, not responding to threatening messages demanding payment or credit information, verifying official logos before completing any forms, and reporting any suspected fraud. Assistance and fraud reporting can be accessed via the State of Health website or the Office of the Attorney General.
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