Health Officials: Watch out for COVID-19 Vaccine Prepayment Scams
We knew it was going to be just a matter of time before scammers started working all the angles regarding the COVID-19 vaccine.
Health care organizations throughout the Sioux Empire are beginning to alert residents now of the threat of possible COVID-19 vaccine scams in an effort to ensure people do not fall victim to a scammer preying upon those waiting to get vaccinated.
Dakota News Now is reporting that scammers are currently making phone calls to people claiming that you need to prepay over the phone in order to get vaccinated.
Elderly people make easy targets for scammers. That's why the health community wants you to know that you do not have to pay to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
People within the health care community are hearing reports that scammers are starting to call people, especially the senior population, claiming they need to pre-pay in order to be vaccinated.
Amy Thiesse, Vice President of Nursing with Sanford told Dakota News Now, “As part of our agreement with the state of South Dakota, there are no, again, no charges or no individual costs for the COVID vaccine for any patient.”
According to Thiesse, here are some things to consider if you feel you have received a call from a potential scammer. “I think what we want to make sure that seniors and others know is that if they do receive a call and people are asking for personal, identifiable information such as social security number, date of birth, those types of things, unsolicited calls, that they should really question whether those are legitimate.”
Remember, a scammer will typically ask you for information that health organizations would never attempt to collect over a phone call.
Thiesse told Dakota News Now, health care organizations are going to ask for things like; scheduling appointments and verifying appointments. They will never ask for payment or cost information regarding the vaccine over a phone call.
She also said that people should be on the lookout for calls coming from a blocked caller or an unknown caller. Those are generally suspicious in nature in these cases.
If you feel you have received a possible scam call, the best way to report it is by calling your local police department’s non-emergency line. Or by reporting it online at donotcall.gov.
Source: Dakota News Now
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