Jun 5, 2018 | By: Sarah Winkelmann

Local Financial Agency Warns of Medicare Scams in Brainerd Lakes

There will be big changes coming for Minnesotans on Medicare for 2019. According to the Minnesota Board on Aging, nearly half of Minnesotans on Medicare will be affected.

“There is a certain type of Medicare Plan that is going to be phased out, and it is called a cost plan,” said Brian Sedlachek, a Financial Advisor for Central Choice Financial in Baxter.

Cost Plans affected in Minnesota, including Crow Wing County, are Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota Platinum Blue Plans, HealthPartners Freedom Plans and Medica Prime Solution plans. If you are currently enrolled in a plan that is being phased out, you can expect to hear from providers through the mail over the next few months.

“They will see even more information as we get closer to open enrollment which starts October 15,” Sedlachek said.

All of that information will come through the mail, but local residents are getting phone calls stating that “Your quote for health insurance is ready”.

“They are being very generic about it, but when they say they have your quote ready for you, they aren’t obviously talking about Medicare, and they are trying to get them on the phone and have the client or the member lead into Medicare,” Sedlachek said.

Sedlachek has even heard from clients that these scam phone calls show up with a 218 area code.

“It is hard to keep up in this world of technology, and I am just surprised how people are spending so much time to scam people and try to get their hard-earned money and take it from them,” Sedlachek said.

But what is all adds up to is this: do not give out personal information to unknown sources.

“Nobody should be calling you if you are a Medicare member except your local agent,” Sedlachek said.

If you need to change plans, you can contact the Senior LinkAge Line to safely get information about new plans. You can call them at 1-800-333-2433 or live chat by clicking here.

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