Medicare Makes Refund Mistake

WASHINGTON (AP) - Medicare officials say about 230-thousand Medicare recipients nationwide were mistakenly sent a check as a refund for monthly premiums they paid for prescription drug coverage.

Officials say the checks average about 215 dollars and should not be cashed.

The group was also mistakenly sent a letter saying monthly premiums will no longer be deducted from their Social Security check.

There are about 422-thousand Medicare recipients in Oklahoma who have the prescription drug coverage. It's not known how many received the mistaken refund.

Medicare officials say they caught the mistake shortly after the checks were sent and are sending a second letter telling people of the problem and not to cash the check or spend the money.

Mark McClellan with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services says the mistake was made when his agency updated the Social Security Administration about changes in coverage that was requested by the beneficiaries.