Search Results for 'fraud'

Liz Taylor takes comments

One of the best reads ever on aging deliberately is Liz Taylor–
Her series has been mentioned previously –

I just discovered that the columns published at Kitsap Sun Stories: Liz Taylor: Aging Deliberately allow comments (registration required) and have an RSS feed . This is so much more convenient and useful than the Seattle Times venue. I’m not sure which is the primary home for Liz’s work, however, and Kitsap may not carry all her columns. At the Seattle Times I have to subscribe by E-mail to their health series (once a week e-mail, all health stories which are interesting) to get notice of her columns. Otherwise I have a Google News Alert for Liz Taylor+ aging, which sometimes brings in notice of National Velvet. [the colors behind some items below mean nothing except straightening out the code remains to be done.]

Liz Taylor began her career as a federal consumer-fraud investigator and was appointed by Elizabeth Dole in 1976 to direct a nationwide investigation of the nursing-home industry. She’s worked in the aging field ever since.

In the 1980s, Liz became one of the first geriatric care managers in the Pacific Northwest, working with thousands of families and older adults to find high-quality services. In 2000, she founded Aging Deliberately, a business that teaches people how to prepare for their aging so they’ll have more control over what happens to them. In 2005, she served as a delegate to the White House Conference on Aging. She’s won the American Geriatrics Society’s 2007 Aging Awareness Media Award and the Washington Association of Homes and Services for the Aging’s Excellence in Media Award. http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/growingolder/

It’s relatively easy to age successfully if you’re wealthy. Money can’t buy happiness, but it certainly allows you to buy the things that make life more comfortable at any age. 1/26/2008 11:00 PM
In my last column, I wrote about a growing problem: what to do when an older person who has dementia hasn’t named anyone she trusts to make decisions for her. This week I’ll tackle a tougher issue: what to do when the person she names does a poor job. 11/17/2007 11:00 PM
My e-mail has had a repeated theme recently: An older person with dementia, such as Alzheimer’s disease, isn’t paying bills, preparing meals, bathing, and other important tasks — but refuses to allow anyone to help.
11/3/2007 09:00 PM |
There’s a certain uniformity to finding a physician under Medicare these days. Rich or poor, if you’re 65 or older, you’re likely to have similar slim pickings (more so if you’re poor and on Medicare and Medicaid). 10/20/2007 11:00 PM |
Most of us want to live a long time, but nobody wants to grow old. The irony is, most of us will — live a long time and grow old. It’s easy to do — all it takes is letting the days roll by. As long as you’re healthy, getting old is a piece of cake.
10/6/2007 11:00 PM |
It’s easy as pie to age well when you’re healthy. The friction comes when you become frail. Sometimes it’s self-inflicted, the product of isolation, poor eating habits, lack of physical activity and falls — all common problems for people who age in their homes but don’t plan it correctly. 9/22/2007 11:00 PM |
A woman in her late 70s, a good friend, is pondering her options. Her home is two stories (or three, including the basement), with many stairs to her bedroom, bathroom and the washing machine. 9/8/2007 11:00 PM
Dad is 87, fun and funny, with moderate dementia. He lived “on the edge” in his own home for years while we kids worried sick. 7/28/2007 11:00 PM
When I was growing up in the 1950s and ’60s, cars were sort of round and later sort of square. My dad wore a hat to work and took the bus.
7/14/2007 11:00 PM
I’m 75 and have lived in an assisted-living facility for a year.
7/8/2007 02:00 AM
Older people are not simply younger people with wrinkles our bodies change dramatically as we age, both inside and out; some parts wear out before others, sometimes several at once.
6/17/2007 02:00 AM
Whether you live at home, in a retirement community, or in a yurt on top of a mountain, as you age, you want to do it consciously.
6/3/2007 02:00 AM

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Mary Ann Sundown on YouTube

Mary Ann Sundown (click to read previous) and her sister have a video on YouTube, courtesy of her son, from a recent basketball tourney intermission.

If the video doesn’t play well in the viewer below, try going directly to the site (I usually have better luck at “Gootube” itself)–


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ID theft in medical records

It is likely you may have heard of break-ins to personal data sets, such as the veterans affairs in the US or various banks or universities. In the US, at least, there are frequent TV ads about identity theft, including the two older women who end up buying tricked out motorcycles without their consent.

This LA Times article points out another, possibly deadlier, version of ID theft.

I know it doesn’t even require a theft to have errors in the health system. Our regional health monopoly frequently charges insurance companies (and therefore patients for the remaining excess charges) for treatment never received or for unneccessary procedures. Protests to billing doesn’t clear the charges. The bills are sent out to a collection agency. Protests to the insurance company don’t work; it is cheaper for them simply to process the charges. There is no internal checking mechanism because all charges not billed to insurance are eventually paid by the Federal government as part of their trust responsibility. There is no third party recourse in rural or frontier areas.

  • But until I read this article, I had no idea that erroneous medical information, not just the billing problems, would get passed along. This is truly scary.

The problem of access to one’s medical records predates the HIPAA legislation. Doctors and hospitals have felt patients are unable to understand their records so refused to allow individuals to see their records. I have had a couple of doctors seize X-rays and letters from other physicians, “for my records”, and not return them to me. I had let the doctor see the records for their assistance in my health.

On the other hand I have had excellent primary care physicians who would copy my file for me, when I needed to transfer to another place. Regrettably, there seem to be fewer and fewer instances of genuine medical partnership.

ID Theft Infects Medical Records
Victims face bogus bills and risk injury or death. Privacy laws make such fraud hard to pursue.
By Joseph Menn, Times Staff Writer, September 25, 2006

To guard against identity theft, patients should:

• Ask to see their medical files from each provider on a regular basis;
• Scan medical and insurance bills for services, medicine and equipment they didn’t receive;
• Demand an annual list from their health insurance company of benefits that have been provided.

If medical records have been compromised:

• Ask the healthcare providers to delete the incorrect information and contact everyone they have shared that information with, as required by the health insurance act;
• Ask the providers for a list of those recipients, and follow up with them;
• Clean up records with the health insurer and make sure the provider has not passed along improper benefit reports to insurance databases;
• Scrutinize credit reports for unpaid medical bills;
• File a police report;
• Contact the Federal Trade Commission and state health and insurance departments.


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SEC and NASD Investor Education Foundation

There are lots of good suggestions here. Recurrent themes —

  • need for cooperation amongst the regulators / law enforcement / non-profits / service agencies / etc.;
  • where to find help isn’t clear;
  • socialability (sp?) should be turned against the scammers (don’t isolate yourself: use your social skills to find and share accurate information)
  • as my friend John Aguino (NM Council on Indian Aging) says, elderlies need to know their rights and stand up for themselves.

By Lauren Dake | Contributor to The Christian Science Monitor, from the July 24, 2006 edition

WASHINGTON – Frieda White was the perfect target. Recently divorced, the 70-year-old hoped to supplement her monthly $1,196 fixed income by starting a small business out of her home. When Ms. White received an e-mail purportedly looking for eBay workers, she didn’t see any harm in responding. Not long after White hit “reply,” she received a phone call that would persuade her to take out a $5,365 loan on her Discover card to start her own business….

The SEC took a step in that direction last week when it hosted its first-ever Seniors Summit in Washington, D.C….
[http://www.sec.gov/news/press/2006/2006-109.htm]

Part of the solution, officials say, is teaching seniors how to spot the scammers. Another part is greater cooperation among various levels of law enforcement…. State and federal regulators from across the country met to discuss ways to combat investment fraud as well as a new report on the tactics scammers use. The study, released by the NASD Investor Education Foundation, may help blunt what regulators worry will be an increasing trend: scammers targeting seniors.

…Since states use different titles for their regulators, finding the right person to contact can be difficult. The NASAA’s website (www.nasaa.org), has a link titled “contact your regulator,” and the NASD has a hotline (800-289-9999) that can help investors determine whether sellers are licensed and whether there have been any complaints or legal action taken against their company.

"How seniors can spot a con more easily"
http://www.csmonitor.com/2006/0724/p13s01-lign.html?s=hns


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