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HEALTH PLANS: Fuzzy math from eHealthinsurance?

I’m having no luck getting a reply from eHealthInsurance.com (albeit I’ve approached them in a rather roundabaout route via their sponsored blogger!) about this study they put out last week. They claim that people buying high-deductible health plans from their site found that compared to last year their premiums fell an average of $29 per month. Given that those plans are pretty cheap anyway, that’s a pretty big fall. And several people have emailed me or referenced this study. (More details here and the report itself is here [PDF]). But when did you ever hear of health insurance premiums falling when health care costs continue to rise?

On further review there are more questions than answers. Who got insurance? Was this group more underwritten (i.e. healthier) than the previous year? And what benefits were they getting compared to last year?  And were there changes in deductibles, co-pays and out of pocket maximums?

Just saying that the premium went down is a bit like saying the average price of a BMW 3 series is less this year on average because more people are buying them without the fully loaded options. And if it’s really true that apples for apples the premiums went down why didn’t eHealthinsurance.com put that information in the report?

Anyone who can shed light on this, please get in touch.

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Shannon FTom KCoreenrodrigo espondaMissie Recent comment authors
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Shannon F
Guest

I’m a licensed health insurance agent and I work at eHealthInsurance and I’d like to address some of the false statements in this thread. Contrary to some of the comments to this blog, eHealthInsurance is a reputable, service-oriented health insurance agency. We offer the largest selection of quality health insurance plans available online. We strive to help as many people as possible get the coverage they need by presenting complex health insurance information in an objective, user-friendly format, enabling the research, analysis, comparison and purchase of health insurance products that best meet consumers’ needs. We are licensed to sell health… Read more »

Tom K
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Tom K

Dear Coreen; Thank you for the information re the cold calls. You are absolutely right that my information was sold as a lead. Unfortunately 20 calls turned out to be a gross under report. THEY DO NOT STOP. NOW MONTHS HAVE GONE BY AND I KEEP GETTING CALLS. I actually feel bad for the brokers who are trying to make a buck and obviously were sold information very very far down the line. I suspect the information is sold and resold and resold. I was very polite to them, and they were genuinely sorry. But unable to take me off… Read more »

Coreen
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Coreen

To Rodrigo Esponda: I’m really sorry to hear what’s happened to you. The best advice I can give is to look on your state’s website and see what organization oversees the insurance in your state. (You’ll want to get the exact term down, as each state goes by something slightly different…it’s usually something like “state” insurance commission). Then call up EHI, try to get to talk to someone as high ranking as possible, and when you hit a block, let them know if you don’t get to speak to at least a manager, you’re filing a complaint w/your state commissioner.… Read more »

Coreen
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Coreen

This is for Missie in response to her backlash at Tom Kittensen MD…(and no, I don’t know Tom, but I feel you need this brief educational course to follow, and that Tom didn’t deserve your immature rant) “tom kittelsen md YOU COULDNT BE MORE INCORRECT. eHealthInsurance does NOT sell your information. Those so called calls from (other) health agents,..could they actually be Sales Reps from eHealthInsurance, and not other insurance companies?! YES, it could.And, yes it is!” Before you start calling someone “sad” and saying how they are trashing a business, you may want to educate yourself on something called… Read more »

rodrigo esponda
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rodrigo esponda

I applied for a health insurance for my family through ehealthinsurance.org and after more than a month and 700 dollars less they have not been able to provide me with the service. Given the situation I asked to cancel the service and get my money back and it has been hell. How can I get legal help?

Missie
Guest
Missie

tom kittelsen md YOU COULDNT BE MORE INCORRECT. eHealthInsurance does NOT sell your information. Those so called calls from (other) health agents,..could they actually be Sales Reps from eHealthInsurance, and not other insurance companies?! YES, it could.And, yes it is! How many other insurance websites did you go to, and enter your personnal information into them as well? Could they be calling as well? AND 20 calls, you are VERY much exaggerating that number. They do have a max phone call follow up, that they follow. SO, not to waste your time or theirs. Did you happen to say in… Read more »

Michael Fizzarotti
Guest

Well, eHealthInsurance is the dominant online broker, so they are pretty much free to promote which ever plan favors them, rather than the consumer. But there is good news. We’re a country based on creating competition in the marketplace. There are other options for you to pursue when purchasing health insurance. Might I recommend Health Plan One. We are focused on providing the very best customer service because we want to make sure you get the best plan to fit your lifestyle.
Give us a visit at http://www.HealthPlanOne.com
Or call us toll-free @: 877-567-5267

tom kittelsen md
Guest
tom kittelsen md

ehealth insurance sold my personal information to every health insurance agency in the country. I am a physician and they gave out my personal email and phone number to everyone. I got without exaggeratin twenty plus cold calls from health sales people. Don’t give them your information is my advice.

Chet
Guest
Chet

Don Osborn could not be more wrong…do your research…
Google does not BASICALLY own EHI. The site is a brokerage not an Insurance company. They are in it to educate the end user. If people didnt have a tool such as this site offers..the would have nothing but your un educated ramblings to rely on….
Sad…

Don Osborn
Guest

Just so you know, ehealthinsurance is basically owned by Google. The bottom line is never trust a guote generator. Shop, read all of the details, and apply online directly with the carriers. There are websites set up to allow you to do this conveniently. If you don’t have the time to do the work yourself, ask an agent a recomendation. That’s his job. Beware of sites that really designed to obtain your personal information that is then sold to agents as sales leads.
Don Osborn
mtnhealthinsurance.com

Florida Health Insurance
Guest

I’m with Mr. Dick. I am a broker as well in Florida. BCBS or Golden Rule (United) all the way in FL.
Our site provides 100’s of quotes in real time with Aetna, United, Celtic, Humana, etc.
http://www.healthinsuretoday.com

Tom
Guest
Tom

Why does Golden Rule come back cheaper? Because it is. I work in Florida and Golden Rule KILLS Fortis’ rates day in and day out. Plus Fortis totally sucks about paying ANYTHING in the first year. We work at a brokerage firm and see all the policies and how they work. No companies gets more complaints then Fortis. They suck at paying claims. Every since Golden Rule got bought out by United Health Care they have been cleaning everyones clock. Only company that holds up is BCBS. That is because they have a very affordable 500 dollar 80/20 plan with… Read more »

Steven DIck
Guest
Steven DIck

I have just had a very bad experience with ehealthinsurance. The company is incompetent. When I tried to buy insurance through them, they hooked me up with a company that sat on their hand and did not process my payment. I never needed the insurance and they are out $600 but I am mad that I was promised insurance and they could not even process the account correctly.
What good is insurance if it comes from a company that can not do the job?

danielle
Guest
danielle

Help! Need to leave cobra and find affordable basic health care for an individual. Is ehealth a good option? Self employed with no medical problems and no dependents…any advice? Thanks

Ron Greiner
Guest
Ron Greiner

rdg, That’s why it might be better to have an informed agent instead of an online enroller. I have talked to ehealthinsurance people and pointed these problems out some time ago. You should of heard how they bad mouthed your plan. Of course I was a bit more informed than their phone people, which wouldn’t take much. They have set up their software to give preferred rates for Golden Rule and standard rates for Fortis. If Elisa ever comes back she will say it’s all an accident. I know better, it’s all done with the desire to market one plan… Read more »