Potential fraud surrounding COVID-19 vaccines has the Wyoming Department of Health issuing a warning for Wyoming residents.
On Tuesday, February 16, WDH officials issued a statement reminding Wyomingites to be “on alert for suspicious, potentially fraudulent activity as efforts to help prevent COVID-19 deaths and illnesses by providing free, safe and effective vaccinations continue.”
The department says that they’ve received reports of unexpected calls from people falsely claiming they represent a local health department or the Wyoming Department of Health.
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“The callers go on to request payment or personal details such as social security numbers,” said Michael Ceballos, WDH director. “We want to remind everyone that COVID-19 vaccines are free to those who are getting them and insurance is not required. No one should be asking you for payment to get a shot or to make an appointment. Vaccines are not typically being given in homes and there is no payment option to get ahead in line. Your social security number is not needed and should not be given over the phone to someone who calls you unexpectedly.”
Scams related to COVID-19 vaccinations should be reported to the Consumer Protection Unit in the Wyoming Attorney General’s office by calling 307-777-6397, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or submitting formal complaints.
Ceballos noted some people may be asked to show Medicare or insurance cards at their vaccine appointments only so professionals giving shots can get reimbursed.
“It’s also important to ensure you are on the right website if seeking vaccine information or appointment details,” Ceballos said.
Official vaccine distribution details and pre-registration options for each county in Wyoming can be found at their website.
Those unable to visit the website for county-specific information can call the WDH toll-free vaccine phone line at 800-438-5795.
The WDH is also reminding:
- The currently authorized vaccines require two doses for maximum protection.
- For most people it is best to receive vaccines in the county where they live.
The Latest Statistics from the Wyoming Department of Health:
What to do if you are feeling sick: In the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Casper-Natrona County Health Department says that people who are feeling sick or exhibiting symptoms should contact their primary physician.
If you do not have a primary care provider, and live in Natrona County, please contact the COVID-19 hotline, operated by the Casper-Natrona County Department of Health. The line is open Monday – Friday 8:00 am – 5:00 pm 577-9892. Hotline services are intended for Natrona County residents and may not be able to provide specific information to persons calling from out of county.
Officials ask that you please do not self-report to the Emergency Room. Persons experiencing problems breathing should call 9-11.
For general inquiries and non-symptom related questions about COVID-19, please contact the Casper-Natrona County Health Department via email: email@example.com
- Practice Social Distancing by putting distance between yourself and other people. This is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick
- Stay home if you’re sick
- Cover coughs and sneezes. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.
- Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
A list of area closures attributed to COVID-19 are available here.