Things people should be wary of while dealing in the mental healthcare sector

Mental healthcare scams occur when healthcare seekers or some mental health organization makes an attempt to garner money by fooling others or when pharmacies or drug manufacturers trade medications that are dangerous to consume. It can also be considered a healthcare scam when medical providers make false claims or promise something related to mental health medications or therapy but do not fulfill them, or fraudulently make a profit from patients. Anyone who is less knowledgeable, from mental healthcare providers to seekers, can fall for the traps set up by these scammers. Deep insight into the tactics utilized in healthcare scams can help people to prevent these scams. Some strategies that mental healthcare scammers commonly use are discussed in these articles.

Mental healthcare scams occur due to,

  • Impersonation of legitimate medical practitioners
  • Demonstrating fake documents
  • Unsafe medications
  • Compromised raw materials
  • Fictitious online pharmacies
  • Exploiting charges based on per-visit rules
  • Investigational treatments charges
  • Impersonation of government agencies
  • Unnecessary services and false diagnoses

Impersonation of legitimate medical practitioners:

In this era of digitization, most of us seek medical help on online platforms. Mental healthcare providers are also readily available on the internet. But these ingenious scammers are no exception. They take advantage of these online platforms and defraud people by impersonating legitimate psychologists and consultants. They imitate popular websites where people go to seek medical help and fool them into transferring money to their accounts. Sometimes they do not aim to steal money but garner their targets’ personal information and trade them in the black market and leverage them for further profits.

Demonstrating fake documents:

When people look for mental health care treatments, they search for professionals who can successfully help them. People opt for these medical practitioners based on their qualifications and certifications. This is why the scammers imitate the credentials, license numbers as well as identifications of legitimate psychologists and therapists.

So it is important that you do not make a decision based only on a medical practitioner’s qualifications and certifications. Instead, look for other things that will help to identify their legitimacy.

Unsafe medications:

When you approach a medical practitioner who does not possess proper knowledge, they may make inappropriate diagnoses. When they recommend medications that are not useful at all but instead deteriorate patients’ mental health, these circumstances count as healthcare scams. We can call the medical practitioners scammers who lack understanding and run experimental treatments on the patients without letting them know.

Compromised raw materials:

Medical practitioners and pharmacists are also considered scammers when they sell medicines of compromised quality. Scammers do that so that they can earn extra benefits by trading them. They generally use the cheapest raw materials and subsidiary products for profit, making their medicines harmful to consume. People should be wary of these scammers as they care least about others’ health, and it could lead to consumers falling sick or even worse.

Fictitious online pharmacies:

Scammers run fictitious pharmacies on online platforms. They make profits by selling fake medicines and providing other services. Scammers lure customers by providing incredible offers that sound too good to be true. Sometimes they impersonate existing, legitimate online pharmacies that are popular. These scammers target the existing customers of the pharmacy they counterfeit. They also imitate their website, name, and logo to fool people and garner money from them. In addition, scammers who are intended to garner their targets’ personal information sometimes offer medicines for free to entice them to provide their private data as well as bank details.

Exploiting charges based on per-visit rules:

There are plenty of medical practitioners and psychologists that take advantage of charges based on per-visit rules. They set up multiple visits for an illness or a therapy that can be cured within a few days of visits. Medical providers generally charge their patients for every visit they make, and thus, they arrange unnecessary visits so that they can make more profits exploiting this practice.

Investigational treatment charges:

Psychologists, therapists, and also researchers often conduct investigational treatments. These experimental treatments are either free of cost or performed at a meager price. Sometimes conductors pay the participants to be a part of the research. People whose medical needs match these treatments opt for them as they need to spend less.

However, healthcare scam occurs when researchers hide from the participants that they are being a part of an experimental treatment and conduct their research on them and charge the participants like it’s a regular treatment.

Impersonation of government agencies:

When scammers decide to deceive people by impersonation scams, they usually choose to counterfeit a government agency. Scammers target random people and contact them, posing as government agents. Deceitful healthcare scammers try to convince them that they are running a mental health campaign and are concerned about people’s mental health. They demand money in advance to let them participate in the campaign, which does not even exist in reality. Once they garner the upfront money they require, they cease all the contacts and run away with their money, without any delay.

These scammers are prevalent in times of natural calamities and predicaments. They also consider global economic downturns as an excellent opportunity for perpetrating mischief. As more people struggle with mental health issues during these periods, scammers do not miss out on the chances where they can take full advantage of these situations.

Unnecessary services and false diagnoses:

Even after providing the necessary services, providers claim that patients need additional medical services, when they are not needed at all. They do this so that they can charge more from the patients and make more profits. Not only that, but they also include needless diagnostic procedures only to add up to their bills. Sometimes these ingenious scammers do not even seek their patients’ consent and perform these actions.

Sometimes they also add service charges and hidden fees that were not mentioned before the treatments. They bring up these charges at the end of the treatment. Thus, helpless patients are left with no option but to pay these greedy scammers.


As we know, every problem comes with a solution, and verifying the medical providers’ legitimacy before dealing with them serves as a great antidote to preventing healthcare scams. Moreover, it is advisable to conduct an independent investigation before trusting someone with your money. Take appropriate countermeasures which will help you to obstruct further regrets.

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