How to Protect against Medical Identity Theft
1. Medical records theft can damage your medical records
Information from the thief’s medical history is widely dispersed among caregivers, labs, and insurance companies, making it extremely difficult to set the record straight. Doctors may be reluctant to correct erroneous information trying not to be exposed to liability. For example, if they eliminated a note about severe back pain, they might be prosecuted for an illegitimate prescription, which would remain on file at the pharmacy. With computerized medical or claims records, the erroneous information still remains on archived backup files.
2. Medical records theft can damage your credit ratings
To completely resolve medical identity theft, it is important to clean up your credit report, if necessary.
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2. Medical insurance card is similar to a Credit card
Insurance card is almost same as credit card and you need to protect it the same way you protect credit cards.
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3. between 250,000 to 500,000 Americans have already been victims of medical identity theft.
While most cases to date have involved drugs and health fraud, some states are seeing a connection with organized crime.
4. False and wrong information can prevent from getting insurance
False and wrong information can prevent you from getting insurance or certain jobs—or lead to dangerous errors in emergency care.
Some victims have discovered the problem when insurance was denied because they had inexplicably reached their benefit cap.
5. See here latest news regarding Medical Identity Theft...........ABC news
Here you have a bag of safe tips that will help you protect your medical records and to help prevent from being responsible for somebody else medical expenses.
1. How can you discover that you are a victim of Medical Identity Theft
Carefully review insurance statements or ask every year to see if you are:
2. Request a copy of History of Disclosures
The history of disclosures can be an important tool to help fight medical identity theft. you have the rights to get it by HIPPA
History of Disclosures, is a record of the disclosures of personal health information made by health care providers or insurers. This record shows what information was disclosed, when it was disclosed, why it was disclosed, and the recipient of the information. If wrong information about you was created, there is a good chance that it was circulated to others. The history of disclosures can be important in tracking the information.
3. Request a copy of medical files from each
health care provider.
The medical files help you see any erroneous information about you and also to maintain a personal health record in one place.
(For more information please visit the American Health Information Management Association at http://www.myphr.com/.)
If you are not satisfied with how your request for access , you can file a complaint with the Office of Civil Rights at the federal Department of Health and Human Services http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/ or call 1-800-368-1019.
4. Correct erroneous and false information in
Here are some general guidelines for amending your records:
If you find errors in a doctor's office file, you may find that the doctor will simply delete the errors. However, you also need to check if other copies exist with the insurance company, laboratory or pharmacy.
5. Periodically check your credit report
A number of victims of medical identity theft discovered they were victims by checking their credit report. One frequently seen result for victims of medical identity theft was to find a collection notice for a hospital, medical lab, or for a variety of medical services on the report.
If the imposter used your name, Social Security Number and insurance information, it can be difficult to prove that the debt does not belong to you. In a number of cases, victims have been able to prove their innocence by comparing the false entries in the medical file with their regular medical files. For example, the victim who was treated may be older or younger than you, and may have different diseases, and so on.
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6. File a police report
If you can not remove erroneous information from a health record and you believe that you were a victim of medical identity theft, it may be useful to file a police report and obtain a copy of that report. Sending copies of a police report to insurers, providers, and credit bureaus may be a step in cleaning up the problem. There is no guarantee that a police report will cure all the problems, but it should be useful.
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