Submitted by Gene Gray
MCREA members were enlightened by two fabulous workshops on Thursday, January 15. The first was provided by NJEA’s Member Benefits expert, Phil Lomonico, who outlined the many ways we can save money. The second workshop focused on Medicare Fraud and was presented by Charles Clarkson.
Phil Lomonico outlined numerous ways we can save money in travel, insurance, major purchases, restaurants, and businesses. By logging on to www.neamb.com, members can search the Member Benefits Directory to find hundreds of discounts that companies offer to NJEA members. In addition, NJEA also sponsors Buyers Edge Inc. and provides savings on appliances, cars, furniture, and more. He also told us to register for the monthly giveaways. Phil demonstrated that by logging onto www.buyersedgeinc.com with Username/Group #:3386 and Password: NJEA, members have many discounts at their fingertips. You can also access both websites by logging onto the NJEA website and clicking on Member Benefits.
The second workshop was equally as informative and eye opening. Did you know that fraud costs Medicare over $60 BILLION dollars a year or 10 percent of our tax money earmarked for Medicare? And, medical professionals are the main culprits. Charles Clarkson outlined the three main fraudulent abuses: 1. Medicare being double billed, 2. Medical groups upcoding (ie. Coding for a cat scan when patient only received an x-ray), and 3. Charging for services NOT rendered. Charles emphasized the importance of everyone reading their Medicare statements for accuracy and if any discrepancy is noted, to call his office immediately at 877-767-4359. In addition, Charles wants each of us to set up a “MyMedicare” Account at www.medicare.gov which will make it possible for us to read our Medicare statement immediately following an office visit and check for accuracy when our visit is fresh in our mind.
The 59 members who attended the workshops had an enjoyable experience and left energized and entertained. Our MCREA workshops are free of charge and are scheduled each year the second week of January. Please plan to attend the Workshops next year on Thursday, January 14, 2016. Topics will be announced in October.