Health Insurance Companies Suck – Personal Finance Review

January 13, 2008

What would happen if you had a bill more than a year overdue?  Can you say late fees, collection agency?  Why is it that insurance companies can jack you around for more than a year and suffer no consequences at all?

I’ve written before about a health insurance problem we’ve been fighting, caught between a doctor’s office and health insurance company.  Just last week I think I finally brought it to an end.  After countless phone calls someone at the insurance company finally noticed the date of service was over a year ago and decided to take care of my problem.

I had to laugh when I was transferred to the “Rapid Response Team” to take care of the issue.  I don’t know that I’d call more than a year of waiting very rapid.  To add insult to injury, I was put on for multiple long intervals by the rapid response team as they “researched” the problem, hmm isn’t that what they’ve been doing for over a year now? 

I can’t declare “victory” until the payment actually reaches the doctor’s office but I think my main question is why it has to be a battle to be won? Why can’t they honor their commitments in a timely manner just like everyone else in this economy has to?  Anyhow, if this gets you worked up as it did me, here are some money posts you can read to let off a little steam:

Congrats to Golbguru who has found his dream job and will finally have time to blog again!

The Sun gives a comparison of the TransUnion VantageScore Credit Score compares it to the FICO score, The Digerati Life has 5 Hot Tips for First Time Investors, and Generation X Finance warns us to learn from the past and not repeat financial mistakes.

Lazy Man asks Netflix vs. Blockbuster – Which to Choose?, I say sign up for both Blockbuster & Netflix!

If you’re looking for a way to control your personal finances for the new year check out 4 Ways To Make It Harder To Spend Money by Blueprint for Financial Prosperity and Discipline and personal finance by Mighty Bargain Hunter.  Of course that may be easier said than done, if any of you have a new baby on board, checkout No Credit Needed for his take.

Five Cent Nickel talks about keeping cash on hand and Free Money Finance reminds us of the 13 Most Overlooked Tax Deductions, tax season will be here before you know it!

One of my favorite personal finance steps I’ve taken is to automate our investing and bill paying.  Get Rich Slowly has a good overview of How to Automate Your Personal Finances.  Just watch out for some of the potential problems with automated online bill pay.

Have a great week!

Ben

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Ben

Ben Edwards, the founder of Money Smart Life, saved up enough to buy a Nintendo back when he was 12 years old. When he used the money to buy shares of Wal-Mart stock instead, he knew he wasn’t like the other kids… His addiction to personal finance has paid off for his family and now he’s helping you to afford the life that you want. Check him out on the web at Google Plus, Twitter and Facebook.


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Comments

6 Responses to Health Insurance Companies Suck – Personal Finance Review

  • Insurance Company Hater

    You are not more important to your insurance adjuster then his job, or him getting a raise or promotion.

  • Rachel

    I just need a prescription so I can go to work tomorrow! Is that so hard

  • group benefits

    You can blame for the mistakes the whole health care system. I`ve never had any complaint on my long term care insurance canada, just because before signing the contract I asked an unbiased professional about this theme and he suggested me the best. I was very careful about my decision I didn`t want to invest my money in some dubious companies. Unfortunately the other nuisances of our imperfect health care I can`t avoid as easily.

  • Paul

    Wow, what great timing for a post. Just this morning I was looking for a doctor in New York City to get a sore throat looked at. I went through Aetna’s DocFind, only to be shuffled around from robot phone service to outsourced phone answering service, with no visibility to the doctor’s appointment schedules. I live down the street from 5 medical facilities, and yet, I can’t get an appointment with a single doctor. It was beyond frustrating.

    Fortunately, Jackie at Aetna helped me to find a walk-in clinic, to which I am headed now, but only after some prodding could she find me one 3 blocks away, rather than in Long Island or upstate New York. None of this information was accessible via their cryptic and poorly designed website. I couldn’t even log in!

    If they truly wanted to provide me a service, I should be able to call my health care provider, tell the my symptom and my location, and they should do all the calling of doctors for me, and get back to me with an appointment time and location.

    My rep stressed that I should have a PCP, but in a new place with no point of reference, I’m not gung-ho about signing up a stranger that I’ve never met as a PCP, and even if he/she was, how would that change my ability to get an appointment to get this sore throat sorted out. I just need a prescription so I can go to work tomorrow! Is that so hard?!

    The complication in getting from doctor to patient to resolution is remarkably convoluted. Time for an OVERHAUL!!!

  • Best Advice on Debt

    Yes, health insurance companies do suck. Our entire health insurance systems needs to be overhauled. To combat this, I suggest people (who are healthy & young) get an HSA.

    Mark my words, an HSA will eventually (like in 10 to 15 years) become the 401k of the health insurance industry!

    Sorry for your troubles!

  • Lily

    I can’t agree with you more about health insurance. It’s been nothing but a headache for me since I left my parents’ coverage and had to handle my own insurance.

    Fortunately, I’ve had very good experiences with customer service representatives at my insurance company. I can’t imagine what a horrible job that must be!

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