Medicare Supplement policyholders overcharged due to incorrect personal data


Medicare Supplement policyholders overcharged due to incorrect personal data

The Delaware Department of Insurance (DDI) has received dozens of complaints after Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield (HBCBS) processed hundreds of customer birthdates incorrectly, leading to increased premiums for Medicare Supplement participants. 

DDI said it has taken action to ensure the errors are corrected and affected consumers are notified.

Separately, HBCBS has agreed to reduce its July 1 premium rate increase by half, due to the reduction in claims activity throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

Highmark had planned to increase Medicare Supplement premiums an average of 7.2 percent, the first increase on these plans in several years. However, the pandemic has rendered its former actuarial calculations obsolete, and it has now agreed to reduce the premium increase to an average of 3.5 percent. 

DDI said its market conduct investigators are working with HBCBS to identify the causes of the billing error, and will review measures taken to prevent such issues in the future.

DDI stressed any premium increases related to incorrect age-data will be very small, but urged policyholders to review the date of birth that is recorded with their insurer.

Trinidad Navarro, Delaware’s Insurance Commissioner, said: “Medicare Supplement customers should continue to feel secure knowing that the Department of Insurance is working to ensure this problem is corrected quickly.” 

Delaware Department of Insurance, Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield, Medicare Supplement, Trinidad Navarro

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