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411,000 seniors double-charged in Medicare billing error

Posted at 11:20 PM, Sep 23, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-24 08:13:34-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - A billing error has double charged approximately 411,000 Medicare beneficiaries, according to government officials.

The error affected those who pay their premiums to the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) through Easy Pay (Automated Clearing House payments.)

Officials say the premiums were deducted twice directly from beneficiary’s bank accounts.

“They took out both my husband’s and my payment twice,” said Jacki Montierth.

Montierth teaches tech seminars for seniors at Oasis Lifelong Learning Center in La Mesa, including about how to use their smartphones and computers to access financial and medical documents.

She says, she closely monitors her account, but worries other people may not be as vigilant or even know how to check their statements.

“I’m sure this will hurt many people on limited income and my bank says it may take a week to refund,” said Montierth.

So far, officials say about 20% of the duplicated money has already been refunded. They said they are working to return the rest of the money by Wednesday, September 25.

If the money has not been returned by then, Medicare officials claim the Treasury’s Bureau of Fiscal Service will begin reversing the rest of transactions to complete the reimbursement.

Those who worry they have been overcharged can call 1-800-MEDICARE to report an issue. Officials also recommend reaching out to your bank and ask that the payment be waived.

For those with other questions about Medicare enrollment and payments, Oasis will be having Medicare experts available on Friday for one-on-one consultations from 11a.m. to 1p.m. at their office in the Grossmont Center.

They are also having a free tech conference on October 15.