You are here

Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Kentucky

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, April 17, 2020

Kentucky U.S. Attorneys Robert Duncan and Russell Coleman join Kentucky Attorney General Cameron in Launching PSA Warning about Fraudulent COVID-19 Testing Sites

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Robert M. Duncan, Jr., U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky, and Russell M. Coleman, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Kentucky, along with Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron on Friday jointly released a public service announcement (PSA) regarding fraudulent COVID-19 testing sites.

The 60-second PSA alerts Kentuckians to the dangers of fraudulent COVID-19 testing sites and urges them to work with a licensed healthcare provider if they experience COVID-19 symptoms.  The Commonwealth’s COVID-19 website, kycovid19.ky.gov, contains guidance on when to seek care for COVID-19 symptoms. 

Scammers may use fraudulent testing sites to obtain personal information and payment from patients, often without fully processing the tests or providing patients with the results.

“We want Kentuckians who need COVID-19 testing to get it, but we are encouraging Kentuckians to follow the direction of state and local officials and health departments, including about where to seek legitimate testing,” said U.S. Attorney Duncan. “Kentuckians should be aware that fraudulent COVID-19 testing sites are appearing across the Commonwealth, but they should rest assured that law enforcement is aware of this risk, proactively monitoring the situation, and pursuing criminals who are trying to take advantage of this extraordinary situation.”

“Thieves using the cover of this health threat to prey on Kentuckians would be well-advised to avoid the Commonwealth as arrest and prosecution await you here,” said U.S. Attorney Russell Coleman. “Please assist law enforcement by reviewing these indicators of fraud, use good common sense, and report any concerns as quickly as possible.”

“Information regarding the availability of COVID-19 testing is rapidly changing to keep pace with demand, and we want to arm Kentuckians with tips and information on how to avoid fraudulent COVID-19 testing sites,” said Attorney General Cameron. “Just a few weeks ago, our office opened an investigation into pop-up COVID-19 testing sites in Louisville after learning they were engaging in questionable practices, and we’re prepared to go after any testing site that seeks to take advantage of Kentuckians during the pandemic.”

The following tips should be used to avoid fraudulent COVID-19 testing sites:

  • Contact a trusted, licensed healthcare provider if you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and believe you need to be tested.
  • Avoid any testing site that requires up-front payments or payments in cash only.
  • Contact your local health department to confirm the validity of a testing site. You can access the contact information for local health departments here

U.S. Attorney Duncan, U.S. Attorney Coleman, and Attorney General Cameron, recently partnered with the FBI to launch the Kentucky Coronavirus Fraud Task Force. The mission of the task force is to identify, investigate, and prosecute fraud related to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic impacting Kentuckians.

If you believe you have been a target or victim of a scam or fraud, please report it to the National Center for Disaster Fraud Hotline at 866-720-5721 or via email at disaster@leo.gov. You can also report a COVID-19 scam to the Attorney General’s Office by visiting ag.ky.gov/scams or by calling 1-888-432-9257.

To download a copy of the PSA, click here.

###

 

Topic(s): 
Coronavirus
Contact: 
CONTACT: Gabrielle Dudgeon PHONE: (859) 685-4887 E-MAIL: gabrielle.dudgeon@usdoj.gov
Updated April 17, 2020