DHS warns of DNA, genetic, and cancer screening scam 

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – DHS is alerting seniors of a DNA, genetic, and cancer screening scheme targeting Medicare recipients.

It’s fraud that’s sweeping the nation, and even right here in Arkansas.

Older adults are being contacted by companies offering free tests, but in exchange they are stealing their medicare information.

Mindy Simonson is a genetic counselor at UAMS. She says her department has seen older Arkansans getting hit with the scam.

“We started talking to each other and we realized it was happening all over the country,” Simonson said. 

She says someone claiming to be a medical professional asked unsuspecting seniors for a cheek swab promising test results back, while billing medicare.

DHS says it is not legitimate operations and there are a handful of Arkansans that have been targeted. 

“We’ve gotten about 20 direct clients who have called us directly, but a number of senior centers, senior community organizations that have said we’ve heard from the people we served they have done creek swabs or they have that they done this screening

Simonson says there is a right way to go about getting genetic testing, but falling for this scam is not the solution.

“I really encourage people, if they are really interested in genetic testing to talk to a health care provider that they know,” Simonson said. 

If you do feel like you’ve been impacted by this scam, you can contact Arkansas Senior Medicare Patrol. The number is 866-726-2916.

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