Be careful of COVID popup testing, warns Lytle Mayor Ruben Gonzalez

Lytle Mayor Ruben Gonzalez warned citizens to be careful of COVID popup testing on December 4.
“Team Lytle, today we had a group of questionable folks that were trying to test our residents. (They weren’t sent by a state or county agency.) Please be careful and always check with your health provider for guidance when you need to be tested. They claimed it was free, but they were also collecting other personal information. One of those hmmm moments
“Allegedly they were doing free saliva tests and results came back in 24-48 hours,” according to a Lytle resident.

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5 things about Covid 19 Health Care Fraud
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General is alerting the public about fraud schemes related to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Scammers are using telemarketing calls, text messages, social media platforms, and door-to-door visits to perpetrate COVID-19-related scams.
Fraudsters are offering COVID-19 tests, HHS grants, and Medicare prescription cards in exchange for personal details, including Medicare information. However, these services are unapproved and illegitimate.
These scammers use the coronavirus pandemic to benefit themselves, and beneficiaries face potential harm. The personal information collected can be used to fraudulently bill federal health care programs and commit medical identity theft.
Protect Yourself
Be vigilant and protect yourself from potential fraud concerning COVID-19 vaccines. You will not be asked for money to enhance your ranking for vaccine eligibility. Government and State officials will not call you to obtain personal information in order to receive the vaccine, and you will not be solicited door to door to receive the vaccine.
Beneficiaries should be cautious of unsolicited requests for their personal, medical, and financial information. Medicare will not call beneficiaries to offer COVID-19 related products, services, or benefit review.
Be suspicious of any unexpected calls or visitors offering COVID-19 tests or supplies. If you receive a suspicious call, hang up immediately.
Do not respond to, or open hyperlinks in, text messages about COVID-19 from unknown individuals.

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Ignore offers or advertisements for COVID-19 testing or treatments on social media sites. If you make an appointment for a COVID-19 test online, make sure the location is an official testing site.
Do not give your personal or financial information to anyone claiming to offer HHS grants related to COVID-19.
Be aware of scammers pretending to be COVID-19 contact tracers. Legitimate contact tracers will never ask for your Medicare number, financial information, or attempt to set up a COVID-19 test for you and collect payment information for the test.
If you suspect COVID-19 health care fraud, report it immediately online or call 800-HHS-TIPS (800-447-8477).