First Practice Management
- Posted Wednesday December 19, 2018
NHS England has advised practices to carefully check the validity of invoices they receive after documents were sent to practices that falsely claimed payment was due for a variety of stationery supplies.
As reported by Pulse, NHS England provided the following guidelines for practices:
- Check whether you have a record of ordering the goods or services detailed on the invoice
- Check whether the practice has received the items listed
- Consider searching for the company online in an attempt to establish if the business is genuine
- Do not contact the company using the details contained in the invoice
- Do not pay the invoice unless it can be determined that the invoice is genuine and the goods have been received
NHS England prepared an alert for practices on the subject, commenting: “The fraudsters’ aim is to trick unsuspecting GP practices into paying fake invoices for goods neither ordered (nor) received. One such invoice was received from a company named Office Supply or The Office Supply.’
In October, a fake invoice fraud was projected to have cost Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust between £900,000 and £1m. This highlights the very real threat that opportunistic criminals pose, with this particular case involving what was described as a ‘sophisticated’ scam.
The best advice is to remind staff to stay vigilant, especially with the influx of working pressures that spring up in winter.
You can report any concerns or suspicions you have about possible fraud to the NHS Counter Fraud Authority by calling 0800 028 4060 or using the online NHS fraud reporting tool.