HCA Midwest Health - January 17, 2018

Why do I have to show my driver's license and medical insurance card when I register for care?

Your health insurance card has an ID that shows your insurance provider what coverage you have and that helps our physicians bill that provider accurately. That’s the most important piece of information our doctors need from you.

Checking your driver’s license or other government ID helps ensure that you are the person covered by that health insurance card. This both prevents insurance fraud (which increases everyone’s health care costs) and protects your personal health information.

At HCA Midwest Health, we do everything we can to make sure the right people, get the right care at the right time. That starts with identifying you when you come for treatment. A government-issued ID is the safest way to do that—a driver’s license for most adults. We keep your information secure, while still letting you and your doctors access your patient records when you need them.

You may have heard that identity theft is becoming more and more common. And the amount of personal information you share with your doctors makes hospitals and physicians’ offices prime targets for identity thieves. We take every step possible to prevent identity thieves and fraudsters.

You can also help protect yourself with a few simple steps:

  • Protect your personal information—share only what’s needed to provide your care. Most sources on identity theft protection will tell you not to give out your Social Security number unless it is absolutely required. But for most healthcare providers, it IS needed. A social security number is the only way health systems can make sure they have the right medical record for the right person (and not create duplicate medical records). Plus, if you are on Medicare, your Medicare ID number is the same as your Social Security number.
  • If your ID or health insurance card is lost or stolen, report it right away to get a replacement.
  • Do not let anyone else use your ID or health insurance card. Destroy outdated or former cards.
  • Be aware of fraud schemes via the mail, email or phone scammers. Never give out your personal information these ways unless you know the person calling. Never provide personal information through email because it is not secure.
  • Check all your medical bills to make sure they are for services you received.
  • Check your credit reports for suspicious activity. You are entitled to one free credit report every year from credit reporting agencies.

Get more information on credit reports (and how to get them) from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.