Gov. Brown-Approve “One-stop-shop” for health insurance information & complaints!
By Consumers Union on Tuesday, September 20th, 2011
Today in California, it’s nearly impossible for healthcare consumers to figure out where to get reliable information about choosing a health plan or where to file a complaint about insurance coverage. California’s current system of agencies and offices put in place to help consumers with insurance issues is very fragmented, confusing and hard to navigate.
Where you must file a complaint, for example, depends upon whether one has public or employer-based coverage, a PPO or HMO, Medicare or Medi-Cal. Consumers, often unaware of where to turn, get confused and frustrated and may give up altogether. This situation can threaten consumers’ health as well as their pocketbooks.
Creating a strong role for the Office of the Patient Advocate under AB 922 would provide a clear, centralized source of assistance, as well as allowing a network of community-based organizations for consumer-friendly services.
Federal health reform means that millions more Californians will be eligible, and required to get, health insurance coverage. The many public and private choices that will be available to Californians will make the system increasingly difficult to navigate. We need one, clear, easy place to go for unbiased, up-to-date and accurate information on health coverage choices and issues.