MIAMI (CBSMiami/AP) — A volunteer program is looking to expand its force to detect and report Medicare fraud, especially in South Florida which is a hotbed for illegal claims.

The Senior Medicare Patrol program, which operates in five states, asks seniors and their caregivers to be on the look out and to report suspected Medicare abuse.

Retired pharmaceutical executive Joe Schwartz is among those trying to educate Florida seniors about the scams. He argues seniors should get involved since funds used to pay bogus claims deplete resources for their legitimate claims. Schwartz visits health fairs, senior centers and parks.

The Senior Medicare Patrol program also provides online refreshers to its volunteer corps.

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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