Alan Ormsby, State Director for Utah AARP (American Association of Retired Persons), has come forward with advice for the the state’s seniors.
First, that Utahns over 70 now have priority in the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine and secondly, that there are scammers afoot who want to take advantage of those seniors.
“The good news is, most of the local county health departments now have the ability to get you on a list where they will contact you, once they have vaccine available,” Ormsby says. “So, you don’t have to go checking their web site day-over-day. They’ll actually get in touch with you when they’ve got the vaccine.”
Those living in Cache, Box Elder or Rich counties over 70 need only to sign up at the Bear River Health Department site brhd.org/covid-19-vaccine-information/.
Regarding scammers, Ormsby says there should be no cost for the vaccine for anyone on Medicare.
”AARP advocated hard to be sure that the vaccine was free to people on Medicare,” he adds. “And, in fact, most private insurance companies are waving co-pays, as well. So, the first big red flag is if someone is calling you or contacting you, chances are it’s a scam. But, as soon as they ask for money, you know it’s a scam.”
AARP warns that scammers are trying to take advantage of the rollout of the vaccine by using telemarketing, text messages, social media and even door-to-door-visits.
They also warn that no one from either Medicare or an insurance company will ask for your Social Security number, or credit card information on the phone.