Wisconsin SMP. Helping keep the promise.

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1 FraudAlert! Helping keep the promise. Wisconsin SMP February 2010 Volume 13, No. 7 Coalition of Wisconsin Aging Groups Elder Law Center From the Project Coordinator Elizabeth Conrad To learn more about Wisconsin SMP, please visit our new web site To learn more about Senior Medicare Patrols, please visit Mark Your Calendars World Congress Leadership Summit on Health Care Fraud and Abuse May 13-May in Washington DC. The World Congress Leadership Summit on Health Care Fraud and Abuse convenes health plan executives operating in Medicare, Medicaid and Commercial coverage to discuss processes for identifying fraud and abuse by government appointed task forces and the $850 billion spent annually in health care waste. They will also learn best practices to avoid criminal charges and retribution through innovative, thought provoking discussions dealing with the dynamic issues facing payers today. Sessions: Regulation Adherence, Fraud Investigation, Abuse Reduction, Identity Theft Protection, Appropriate Physician Coding, Compliance. For more information on additional upcoming events, visit Mark Your Calendars Wisconsin Women s Health Policy Summit 8:30-5:00 PM May 12 th at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison The first ever Wisconsin Women s Health Policy Summit for Women's The Summit theme focuses on the Life Course Model, which suggests that a complex interplay of biological, behavioral, psychological, and social protective and risk factors contributes to health outcomes across the span of a person s life. continued on the next page FRAUD ALERT! Coalition of Wisconsin Aging Groups Elder Law Center Wisconsin SMP In this issue: Check out our new web site World Congress Leadership Summit on Health Care Fraud and Abuse WI Women s Health Policy Summit Volunteer Recruitment and RespectAbility Models of Significant Service Program Wisconsin SMP Update 2010 WI Couple Loses $19 K to Phone Scam UW Study Ranks Health of Counties New Attitudes About Aging Upcoming Important Events Address To Report Medicare Part D Scams Published and distributed by the Coalition of Wisconsin Aging Groups Elder Law Center funded in part by grant #90MP0016 from the Administration on Aging, Department of Health and Human Services. Grantees undertaking projects under government sponsorship are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. Points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official Administration on Aging Policy. EDITOR AND PROJECT COORDINATOR Elizabeth Conrad PRODUCTION ASSISTANT Patti Wiersma This publication may be reproduced ONLY in its entirety. Permission to excerpt portions must be obtained prior to use CWAG. All rights reserved Dairy Drive Madison, WI

2 2010 Wisconsin Women s Health Policy Summit Every Woman When: Wednesday, May 12, 2010 from 8:30-5:00 PM Where: Alliant Energy Center Exhibition Hall, Madison WI The Summit theme focuses on the Life Course Model, which suggests that a complex interplay of biological, behavioral, psychological, and social protective and risk factors contributes to health outcomes across the span of a person s life. The Summit will provide an opportunity for health providers, advocates, policy leaders, health care leaders and community members to come together to learn about the wide variety of policies affecting women's health in Wisconsin. It will also help develop a collective women's health policy agenda for our state. Attendees can look forward to impressive keynote speakers, panel discussions and an opportunity to network with other women's health supporters from across the state. For more information, please visit: If you require overnight accomodations, please contact the Clarion Inn and Suites at (608) to reserve a room at our event rate. The Wisconsin Alliance for Women's Health (WAWH) is a statewide organization working to ensure Wisconsin women have access to the comprehensive health care services and information they need and deserve. A Message About Volunteer Recruitment & RespectAbility Models & Self-Directed Teams The Wisconsin SMP Volunteer Coordinator had the opportunity to participate in a webinar presented by Christine Beatty, Director of the Madison Senior Center. The Madison Senior Center is one of 22 agencies awarded a grant from the National Council on Aging RespectAbility Models of Significant Service program. The intent of the grant is to develop self-directed teams of volunteers aged 50 plus to assist the center with its organizational and community issues. The Madison Senior Center was successful in creating 4 distinct teams able to focus on their assigned tasks and required minimal staff support following a comprehensive training and orientation to the agency. Ms. Beatty said we oftentimes hear that the Baby Boomer generation is not willing to volunteer. Statistics show, however, that 33% of the Baby Boomer population provides volunteer service. The Baby Boomer generation is very willing to volunteer, but it is important to find opportunities that offer a flexible schedule, are focused, involve short-term commitments, and are within a friendly atmosphere. The Wisconsin SMP continues to recruit volunteers statewide to provide outreach and education to Medicare beneficiaries. Our volunteer opportunities offer flexible schedules, are focused on healthcare and consumer protection issues, involve short-term commitments, and usually involve attending gatherings such as Health Fairs and Senior Expos. Please contact Judy Steinke, Wisconsin SMP Volunteer Coordinator, at (800) , Ext. 342 if you would like to join our volunteer team. For more information about volunteer opportunities, please visit our new web site at 2

3 Wisconsin SMP Winter 2010 Update Who We Are: Since 1997, the Coalition of Wisconsin Aging Groups Elder Law Center has operated the Wisconsin Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP) project. Funded by a federal Administration on Aging (AoA) grant, the project educates Medicare beneficiaries, and the caregivers and professionals who serve them, about ways to protect themselves from healthcare fraud, waste, and abuse. What We Do: The Wisconsin SMP project offers free educational workshops and trainings about healthcare and consumer fraud at state, regional, and national conferences and actively recruits volunteers from around the state. Publications: Wisconsin SMP publishes a monthly newsletter, The Fraud Alert, that gives up-to-date information about Medicare, healthcare, and consumer fraud issues affecting Wisconsin Medicare beneficiaries. The project also provides a weekly update to our active and former SMP volunteers. What s New? New Web Site As part of our new three-year grant awarded in June 2009, we contracted with Learfield Communications to create the new Wisconsin SMP web site. It just went live on January 15 th, and we are very excited about the possibilities for future use. Please check it out at: Spring Public Service Announcement Learfield has also updated our radio Public Service Announcement that will be part of our spring volunteer recruitment statewide campaign. Volunteer News New Volunteers - Recent Associated Press and Wall Street Journal articles highlighting the national SMP program have sparked increased interest in volunteering. So far, we have received approximately 11 requests for information about SMP volunteer opportunities. We are awaiting application materials and/or background checks before we go ahead and offer formal training sessions. New Training Program In efforts to create uniform training nationwide for SMP volunteers, the AoA and the National Consumer Protection Technical Resource Center have provided us with a new training program. However, this will require, at a minimum, one full-day training session followed by a 50-question exam. Upcoming Activities Exhibit Booths As we get closer to spring, opportunities to attend Health Fairs, Senior Expos, and state professional conferences increase. Whenever possible, we ask our Wisconsin SMP volunteers to work these types of events where we can showcase both Wisconsin SMP and the Coalition of Wisconsin Aging Groups. To view our upcoming SMP activities, please visit and click on the calendar of events. 3

4 This article is reprinted with permission of the Wisconsin Better Business Bureau BBB Alert: Wisconsin Couple Loses $19K in Telephone Scam Milwaukee, Wis. The Wisconsin Better Business Bureau is issuing a warning to seniors after an elderly couple in St. Croix County, Wis. recently lost more than $19,000 to scammers pretending to be the couple s grandson. The couple first received a call from a con artist claiming to be their grandson s lawyer on Nov. 20, The grandparents, in their 70s, were told that their grandson had been involved in a car accident in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The scammer then requested money for the grandson s bail and other damages from the accident, which included a pregnant woman who was now in a coma. The couple was also contacted by a man identifying himself as their grandson, who advised them not to tell his parents about the accident. Both callers asked for money, and the Wisconsin couple wired funds through Western Union eight times in six days including three transfers on Thanksgiving Day -- totaling $19,334. After speaking with their daughter two days later, the couple discovered that their grandson had not been out of the state of Wisconsin during the alleged dates of the accident and subsequent scam. This type of scam is particularly appalling because it victimizes grandparents who want nothing but to protect their grandkids, said Randall Hoth, president/ceo of the Wisconsin BBB. And this case, especially, is alarming; it s the worst of its kind that the Better Business Bureau has ever seen. This scam is commonly referred to as The Grandparent Scam or The Emergency Scam, and was listed second on the BBB s Top 10 Scams of 2008 report. Typically, the scam begins with a phone call from a con artist posing as a grandchild. The voice is distressed, usually explaining an arrest or motor vehicle accident in Canada, and asking that his or her parents not be informed. The fraudster then requests money to be wired through a transfer company, often Western Union or MoneyGram. Phone numbers during these conversations are often listed as unavailable. According to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Call Center (CAFC), there were 278 reports of failed and 88 reports of successful Grandparent Scams from January through October in 2009, totaling $317, in fraud. The CAFC estimates, however, that these reports reflect only 5% of the actual number of cases. The BBB advises that emergency phone calls from loved ones be confirmed by additional family members before any financial transactions are made. Consumers should also recognize any request to send money to a foreign country through a wire transfer company, such as Western Union or MoneyGram, as an immediate sign that the request may be a scam. Funds sent via wire transfer are difficult to track once received by scammers, and are usually not recoverable by law enforcement or banking officials. For anyone victimized by this type of Emergency Scam, the BBB recommends reporting the incident immediately to local police departments and Attorneys General offices. In the case of a request to wire money to Canada, the fraud should be reported to the CAFC by calling PhoneBusters toll-free hotline ( ) or filing a complaint on their website (www.phonebusters.com). For more information or further inquiries, please contact the Wisconsin BBB at or (metro Milwaukee), (920) (Appleton) or (elsewhere in Wisconsin). 4

5 The Better Business Bureau serving Wisconsin is a nonprofit organization that brings 70 years of experience in fostering ethical business practices; providing dispute resolution alternatives; offering consumer and business education; and promoting customer service excellence. Our Reliability Reports provide the general public with critical information about companies both locally and nationally. To check on a company or charity visit or call #### UW Study Ranks the Health of Counties A new study by the University of Wisconsin s Population Health Institute in collaboration with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation ranks every county in all 50 states on how healthy the people there are, how long they live, and other health factors such as smoking, obesity, unemployment rates, and numbers of children living in poverty. The study is available at Counties are compared within a state. Wisconsin has 72 counties, and they are ranked from best to worst in several categories. The study s category of health outcomes is based on mortality ranks (length of life how many potential years are lost by people dying before age 75?) and morbidity ranks. The ranking for morbidity is based on a combination of four factors: people reporting themselves as in poor or only fair health; poor physical health days; poor mental health days; and percentage of births with low birth weight. The top five Wisconsin counties in the health outcomes category are Ozaukee, St. Croix, Washington, Waukesha, and Portage. The bottom five are Adams, Jackson, Marquette, Milwaukee, and Menominee. The study also ranks counties by health factors. These are a combination of health behaviors (smoking, diet, alcohol use, risky sexual behavior); clinical care (access to care, and quality of care); social and economic factors (education, employment, income, community safety, family and social support); and physical environment factors (environmental quality, and built environment.) The top five Wisconsin counties in the health factors category are Ozaukee, Dane, Waukesha, Eau Claire, and Washington. The bottom five are Marquette, Adams, Forest, Milwaukee, and Menominee. New Attitudes About Aging In Engaged as We Age The End of Retirement as We Know It?, researchers examined how the old assumptions are being replaced with new thoughts about opportunities for continued growth and renewed satisfaction with life as an older adult. Their research focuses on engagement in four specific activities: Work, Volunteering, Caregiving, and Education or lifelong learning. The researchers conclude that society needs to further change its perception of the value of older adults and provide more opportunities for their engagement in meaningful activities that will enable them to enjoy greater life satisfaction. You may read the entire research brief at: 5

6 Coalition of Wisconsin Aging Groups & Wisconsin SMP Activities and Events SMP Group Sessions & One-Day Training Sessions February 13 Healthcare & Consumer Fraud Soroptomist Group Milwaukee February 15 Healthcare & Consumer Fraud Senior Church Group WI Rapids February 16 Healthcare & Consumer Fraud Middleton Senior Center Middleton February 25 Healthcare & Consumer Fraud Attic Angel Place Middleton March 10 NEW SMP Volunteer Training Our Savior s Lutheran Church Hartland July 1 Healthcare & Consumer Fraud AARP Group Montello Senior Expos and Health Fairs: March 27 St. Croix County 2 nd Annual Community Health & Wellness Expo New Richmond (Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College) March 30 Senior Americans Day UW Eau Claire Campus Eau Claire May 14 5th Annual Multicultural Senior Health Fair Madison North/Eastside Senior Coalition, Warner Park Community Center October 29 Rock County Senior Fair, Rock County Janesville Professional Conferences and Trainings April State TRIAD Conference Marriott Hotel Racine April CWAG Senior Statesmanship Class Inn at the Park Madison May 2-4 Annual State Conference on Alzheimer s Diseases & Related Disorders Kalahari Resort & Convention Center WI Dells May 6-7 Wisconsin Volunteer Coordinators Association Annual Institute Kalahari Resort & Convention Center WI Dells May 12 Wisconsin Women s Health Policy Summit, Alliant Energy Center Madison July rd Annual CWAG Conference and Convention Green Bay August 2-7 SMP Regional Conference - location to be determined Sept nd Annual Colloquium on Aging Health and Resources Fair Madison 2010 SPRING CWAG DISTRICT MEETINGS DISTRICT DATE FACILITY LOCATION 1 March 26 Auditorium Sun Prairie Colonial Club 2A March 25 Washington Park Senior Center Milwaukee 2B May 7 Walworth County Elkhorn Department on Aging 3 March 15 Marquette County Montello Senior Citizen Center 4 March 29 Sports Corner DePere 5 April 13 Old Country Buffet Onalaska Valley View Mall 6 April 29 Baldwin Senior Center Baldwin 7 March 22 Merrill Senior Center Merrill 8 April 28 Minong Senior Center Minong Contact Mary extension 323 or for further details. 6

7 This article is reprinted with permission of Jessica Olejniczak, Coordinator American Parkinson Disease Association (APDA) Information & Referral Center At St. Mary s Hospital, Madison, WI The Wisconsin Chapter of the APDA is proud to announce its enhanced website. Parkinson s Disease: A Matter of Support and Understanding Having a diagnosis of Parkinson s disease affects everyone differently. But one of the main questions asked is where someone can find more information about the disease. Sometimes, information on the Internet can be distorted or incomplete. Some may be correct, but how would a newly diagnosed person know? The American Parkinson Disease Association (APDA) Information and Referral Center is a place to find the correct information. It is located in Madison but covers the whole state of Wisconsin to help individuals affected by Parkinson s disease gain the information and help they are looking for, while also educating the community. Some of the resources available include booklets provided by the National APDA office about the disease; the Wisconsin Parkinson s Disease Resource Book; supplemental information about topics that can go along with the disease; referrals to movement disorder specialists; information about support groups throughout Wisconsin; and other Parkinson s information. A person may also be added to the office mailing list to receive the Parkinson s Perspective (newsletter) and information about events that are dealing with Parkinson s disease. The materials are written in a general way since the disease affects everyone so differently. The APDA Information and Referral Center is here for anyone wanting to gain more information about Parkinson s disease. You can reach Jessica Olejniczak, coordinator of the center at , or or St. Mary s Hospital, 700 S Park St, Madison, WI Please feel free to contact Jessica to gain much needed information about Parkinson s disease. Also, check out the local APDA website at Please join us on April 18 th at East Towne Mall in Madison for our annual walk-a-thon. All money raised is going towards Parkinson s research. We walk in celebration of April being Parkinson s Disease Awareness Month. For more information please contact Jessica at or check out our registration website at apdaparkinson.donordrive.com/event/wiwalk

8 FRAUD ALERT ELECTRONIC VERSION In previous issues, we told you that Wisconsin SMP Fraud Alert will be sent electronically unless we receive a request for a paper copy from you. Contact Patti Wiersma at giving her your address, to add to our list. Your cooperation is greatly appreciated. Check out the new Wisconsin SMP web site You Can also Access Our Publication by visiting our new web site Or you can visit the Coalition of Wisconsin Aging Groups web site Click on Legal Rights and Benefits then click on Wisconsin SMP and scroll down to Fraud Alert Archives. ATTENTION: All of you with In an effort to save paper, postage and be volunteer friendly, we will issues of the Fraud Alert to those who have . Please contact Patti Wiersma at giving her your address to add to our list. WE DO SUGGEST THAT YOU PRINT EACH ISSUE AND SAVE IT IN YOUR MEDICARE BINDER FOR FUTURE USE. Thank you! For more information, contact: Elizabeth Conrad, SMP Project Coordinator Coalition of Wisconsin Aging Groups Elder Law Center 2850 Dairy Drive Suite 100 Madison, WI Phone: 800/ /

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