FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
For more information, contact: Tatiana Fassieux, Board Chair, 530-898-6717
Los Angeles, CA — The U.S. Senate designated May 15, 2018, as “National Senior Fraud Awareness Day” to raise awareness about the increasing number of fraudulent schemes targeted at older people, to encourage the implementation of policies to prevent these scams from happening, and to improve protections from these scams for seniors.
To kick off this new national awareness day in one of the country’s “hottest” fraud spots for Medicare fraud, members of the Los Angeles City Council, our California Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP) Project Director, Micki Nozaki and members and the Director of Stop Senior Scams Acting Program (SSSAP), Adrienne Omansky, gathered for a press conference that day. During the kick off event, two city councilmen presented an award to Omansky and her troupe for their excellence in education and scams prevention through their fraud skits presented to groups of 40-200+ all over southern California. Omansky spoke highly of their collaboration with our Senior Medicare Patrol and of their writing and producing some of their skits on Medicare fraud.
“California SMP is a key player in mitigating the victimization of our state’s older adults and empowering them to make a difference in stopping fraud,” said Omansky. “We share a powerful partnership that positively affects the lives of thousands of beneficiaries, and it is an honor for our acting troupe and SMP to be recognized on the very day that the U.S. Senate dedicated as a new National Senior Fraud Awareness Day.”
Both SMP and SSSAP applaud the designation of a National Senior Fraud Awareness Day, as awareness is one of the first key steps to preventing, detecting and stopping fraud. “Fraud continues to be one of the most pressing issues threatening the integrity of the Medicare program, and the safety, identity and access to entitled health care benefits for Medicare beneficiaries,” said Micki Nozaki, California SMP Project Director. “We also value our successful partnership with Omansky and the SSSAP. Using storytelling, drama and humor to share an important and serious message is a highly effective way to educate and empower our state’s older adults and younger beneficiaries with a disability to detect, report and help stop fraud.”
California’s Senior Medicare Patrol, a program with close to 700 volunteers statewide, educates beneficiaries, providers, family members and caregivers about Medicare fraud, fraud prevention, detection and where to report it. The California SMP program was awarded to California Health Advocates in 1997 when the SMP program was first established by federal law. California Health Advocates is an independent non-profit organization that provides quality Medicare and related health care coverage information, education and policy advocacy. SMP volunteers are available in each county through the Health Insurance Counseling and Advocacy Program (HICAP), which provides benefits counseling and community education directly to those with Medicare and their families. For more information on CHA, SMP and HICAP, visit CHA’s website at cahealthadvocates.org.
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