(Bloomfield, CT, Thursday, May 14, 2020) – Everyone is concerned about COVID-19, and seniors are especially at risk. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), adults aged 65 and older and individuals with chronic medical conditions are at a higher risk of serious illness and death if they contract the novel coronavirus. This is why it’s extremely important for them to follow local and federal health guidelines, including staying home and practicing social distancing as much as possible.
And health risks aren’t the only concern. The FBI recently warned that scammers are taking advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic to contact seniors through the phone, email, social media or even in person, asking for personal information with the promise of a stimulus check, COVID-19 test or hard-to-find household items.
Dr. Gina Conflitti, chief medical officer for Cigna Medicare Advantage, has important tips to help folks stay safe during this time.
SENIORS SHOULD STAY AWAY FROM CROWDED AREAS, KEEP A SIX-FOOT DISTANCE FROM ANYONE THEY INTERACT WITH, WASH THEIR HANDS OFTEN AND AVOID TOUCHING THEIR FACE, NOSE AND EYES. IF SENIORS MUST LEAVE THEIR HOME, THEY SHOULD WEAR A MASK AND COVER THEIR NOSE AND MOUTH. CHECK THE LOCAL STORES AND PHARMACIES TO SEE IF THEY OFFER SPECIAL HOURS JUST FOR SENIORS TO SHOP. THEY SHOULD ALSO CHECK WITH THEIR MEDICARE OR PART D PROVIDER TO SEE IF HOME DELIVERY IS AN OPTION FOR THEIR MEDICATIONS.
CYBERCRIMINALS ARE TRYING TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF SENIORS DURING THIS TIME. IT’S VERY IMPORTANT TO PROTECT YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION, SUCH AS YOUR SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER, BANK ACCOUNT, CREDIT CARD AND MEDICARE PLAN NUMBER, AND ONLY GIVE IT TO PEOPLE WHO HAVE THE AUTHORITY TO COLLECT IT. IF YOU HAVE ANY CONCERNS OR QUESTIONS, CALL THE ORGANIZATION BACK ON THEIR PUBLIC NUMBER TO VERIFY THAT THE CALL IS LEGITIMATE.
If you think you’ve been the victim of an insurance scam, contact 1-800-MEDICARE, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. That is 1-800-633-4227. For more information, visit cigna.com.