Medical identity theft is increasing at an alarming rate. Theft of your medical identify can be more profitable for criminals than the theft of a credit card.
The National Institute of Health reported "Medical identity theft negatively affects healthcare consumers, providers, and payers. At the consumer level, healthcare and financial problems resulting from medical identity theft can have devastating effects. A healthcare consumer whose medical identity is linked with another individual's medical information could encounter life-threatening experiences as a result of receiving inappropriate medications or treatment. Consumers may suffer financial consequences when healthcare services provided to the fraudulent individual are billed to the medical identity theft victim or the victim's insurance carrier."
For your protection, in January, the Counseling Center will begin using photographs to check our patients' identity. The photographs will be part of the Electronic Health Record, used for identification purposes and considered confidential Protected Health Information.
Be sure to read and understand your insurance statements. Check to be sure your Explanation of Benefits (EOB) from your insurance company or Medicare matches the dates, procedures and providers for the treatment and service you have received.