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EHealthInsurance

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Unprofessional/unhelpful chat operator
Posted by on
Just finished chatting with eHealthInsurance "Kim". I have been waiting for a refund on a health insurance policy that was rejected by the carrier since October 30 (10 days and counting... funny it didn't take them that long to get the money *out* of my account.) The operator could not tell me how long it would take to get a refund from her company... she tried to blame it on "federal privacy laws". My name is on the bank account that the money was withdrawn from... this has nothing to do with the actual health insurance application. As I tried to explain to "Kim", this was simply a matter of a refund for a product that was never received. She then hung up on me. Very professional. Chat transcript is below:

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The next eHealthInsurance representative will be with you shortly

You are now chatting with 'Kim'

Kim: Welcome to eHealthInsurance's live chat service. How can I help you today?

Joe: Hi Kim. I applied for a health insurance plan for my mother with ***. They deducted the premium from my account on 10/22, but the coverage was denied. How long does it usually take for the premium to be reimbursed?

Kim: The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPPA) legislation mandating specific privacy rules and practices for medical care providers and health insurance companies will not allow me to give you any information regarding this application or applicant

Kim: Please have the applicant call or e-mail us to obtain the correct form. Once complete, we can process their request and speak with you. Customer Service may be reached at 1-800-977-8860. Our e-mail address is customerservice@ehealthinsurance.com.

Joe: I don't understand. All I need to know is how long will my money be held up before I get refunded for a product I never received.

Kim: I cannot go over your mom's account, sorry. She may call us for assistance on her application.

Joe: It is my account.

Joe: I filled out the application for her.

Kim: Due to Federal Privacy Laws, she should have applied herself. She needs to call for assistance on her plan/application.

Joe: This is not about the application... it has already been denied. This is about a refund.

Kim: Understandable, unfortunately I cannot assist you since you are not the applicant and we do not have your mom's authorization to speak with you.

Kim: Please have her call us and we can assist her further or have her fill out a form allowing us to speak with you.

Joe: Nice. So you can not tell me, on average, how long a refund usually takes?

Kim: I cannot, sorry.

Kim: Thank you for chatting with eHealthInsurance. In a continuing effort to improve upon our service, we encourage you to complete the survey, which will appear when you close the Chat window.

Chat InformationChat session has been terminated by the site operator.

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Very helpful, thank you. I will not be using your site after this again.
     
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User Replies:

jjones730 on 2009-11-09:
Also, just got off the phone with their toll-free number. The lady I spoke with was very helpful... she was able to tell me how long it usually takes from the carrier and how the refund would be applied, even knowing that I was not the applicant, only the one paying for the insurance (none of that HIPPA nonsense.) Guess the bottom line is if you want help with eHealthInsurace, avoid the chat option. I still won't be using their service again.
JR in Orlando on 2009-11-10:
The HIPPA law provides significant protection and penalties for people who disclose health information. What you overlook is that even acknowledging your mother applied for insurance may violate the law. For example, if an abortion clinic acknowledged a person was or had been a patient, that would disclose confidential information even if all the discussions were concerning payment of a bill.

I believe the second person who helped you might have been the one in violation of the law. Its best if you are going to do this again, to simply fill out the necessary forms so you can speak with them.
PepperElf on 2009-11-10:
I understand the dilemma since you're paying for the plan
however I think the reason she didn't talk to you was because she legally can't discuss any part of the plan.

I would suggest having both you and your mother call
that way there can be no question of "can I discuss this or not"
voiceoff on 2010-01-03:
They did not seem concerned with the son's paying for the account and filing the initial application. There should be some notification that ONLY the applicant or someone authorized can file the form and so the permission would be cleared up front and not a surprise.
bruce s on 2010-10-28:
I feel for you about your experience with Kim. I on the other hand had my experience through email. In my case I have not purchased the insurance yet. I wanted to see what they had to offer via the web (since it is a web based source)but all they wanted me to do was call them. I could go on with the details but you have already been down that attitude road they have. I have considered that e-health is nothing but a list compiler. So they can sell your information to sales agents. That is why you will and others have gotten inundated with solicitations.
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Dirty Business! Check Other Reviews If You Don't Trust Mine!!
Posted by on
I went through EHealthInsurance to get a 1 month brdge policy for me and my son while between jobs. Once I was approved they told me that I wouldn't be eligible for coverage until a week after I was eligible for coverage at my new job, mind you this was weeks away. I called EHealthInsurance and they gave me an email address to send a note to to tell them the situation and they told me that I would be canceled and reimbursed. I sent 3 emails with no response. I finally called them and explained my situation to a PERSON named Naomi. She told me that my email was sent within the timeframe that would allow a refund. She called me back at work 5 minutes later, gleefully telling me that "we have you on a technicality" you didn't type your full name at the end of the email that you sent us to cancel. ARE YOU KIDDING ME??? No one ever told me to do so, and does it matter? And shouldn't they have reached out to me when Ithey noticed that I didn't sign my name? NO, they waited until their cancel timeframe ended...Or, do they think that someone hacked my email and maliciously canceled my health insurance to sabotage me? I asked for a manager to call to discuss 3 x and have not yet received a call. This is a VERY DIRTY company!!!! STAY AWAY! There are way better options out there. EHealthInsurance should be more careful as to whom they used to represent them!
     
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tnchuck100 on 2011-02-06:
Did you pay with a credit card? If so, file a written dispute. Include copies of all supporting documents.
madconsumer on 2011-02-06:
if you did not enter your name at the end of the email message, how where they to know who sent it? and what policy to cancel?
Anonymous on 2011-02-06:
Um, they shouldn't have to tell you to sign your full name at the end of the email. That's just common sense. Anytime you write an email to a business, you should ALWAYS include your full name.
tnchuck100 on 2011-02-06:
As they stated, "we have you on a technicality". They full well knew who it was doing the cancellation. People continue to fight the concept of common sense.
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