Amid high demand, County warns of COVID testing scams

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Posted at 2:39 PM, Jan 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-06 17:47:14-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Amid soaring demand for COVID testing, County Health officials are warning San Diegans to watch out for scam testing sites.

In a news release, the county said San Diegans should be aware of scams from "pop up" sites offering "free" testing. The agency said all legitimate sites should be able to show medical credentials upon request, disclose which laboratory test is being used, where the test is being run and how the results will be reported.

The county says the sites could be fake if they ask for Social Security Numbers or other non-medical information, their materials don't have a logo, or if they are sitting on a sidewalk and not affiliated with a medical provider.

“San Diegans should be wary as some pop-up sites could be personal information scams. If you have doubts, go to a County or community pharmacy COVID-19 testing site,” Dr. Cameron Kaiser, the county's deputy public health officer, said in a statement.

Dr. Eric McDonald, County Health and Human Services chief medical officer, said the fake testing sites pose a risk to public health.

"People are getting information that's incorrect that they can't act on," he said. "Either they're restricting activities when they don't need to or they're actually running around thinking they're safe and exposing loved ones and that's just wrong."

Meanwhile, the National Healthcare Anti-Fraud Association has identified testing site fraud operations in Pennsylvania, Florida, Georgia and New York.