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HHS HealthBeat (March 4, 2013)

Health scams


Three bottles filled with pills.


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Get the facts

From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.

This’ll cure you? Or make you lose weight?

Not necessarily. Health scammers are good at taking your money and bad at delivering what they promise. So a smart shopper has to tell the difference between what looks good in the ad or on the Net and what the product really is.  

At the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Gary Coody is an expert in detecting health fraud. He says that, if it’s an unproven or little-known treatment, ask your doctor.

“Alarms should go off when you see words like ‘new discovery’ or ‘scientific breakthrough’ or ‘secret ingredient’ or ‘all natural miracle cure.’’’

Because it’s not just the money you can lose. Some of the fakes can be dangerous. And relying on the fakes can delay getting real treatment, while the condition you want to treat just gets worse.

Learn more at healthfinder.gov.

HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.

Last revised: March 21, 2013