National Hispanic SMP: Working to Protect, Detect and Report Medicare Fraud Among Hispanic Medicare Beneficiaries
Health care fraud is one of the most pervasive types of fraud targeting seniors. Given that harder-to-reach populations, including Hispanic older adults, are disproportionately victimized, NHCOA in conjunction with the U.S. Administration on Aging (AoA) has been working to fight Medicare fraud within the Latino community through the National Hispanic SMP (NHSMP) since 2008.
Through the efforts of the NHSMP, NHCOA is the sole active player working to curb Medicare fraud in areas with high concentrations of Hispanic older adults by providing assistance and capacity building to local community-based organizations and state SMPs, as well as providing resources for Latino seniors and their caregivers.
To address the disconnect between mainstream Medicare fraud service providers and Hispanic beneficiaries, NHCOA conducted needs assessment surveys in areas with high rates of Medicare fraud targeting these beneficiaries. NHCOA found two common risk factor categories across the country: fear and lack of awareness.
Through community needs assessments conducted with state SMPs, NHCOA also identified specific challenges they face in serving Hispanic beneficiaries due to lack of tools and resources, which are addressed in the NHSMP program structure:
• Direct Community Outreach
• Capacity-Building with Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Materials
• Innovative Communications Strategies