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HELP: Insurance company lost my records - What to do??

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posted on Sep, 24 2013 @ 09:25 AM
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Hello ATS,

I turn to you for help as I could not find any good info relating to hard copies of medical records.

Here's what happened:

My wife and I applied for health isurance on our own from blue cross / blue shield for us and our 2 kids. Since she is on extended maternity leave, her work provided health insurance has run out. BX/BS is the same company which we were covered by from her work.

Not sure why, but they asked us for a copy of all my medical records, even though I was reasonably certain they already have a copy of these records considering the same company has insured me for the last 4 years. After obtaining a hard copy of my records from my primary care physician I dropped off a thick packet at the BXBS headquarters. The lady at the receiving office had me put the info into an envelope, mark it to be delivered to the right office (underwriting), and said it would be delivered there on the 41st floor by the end of the day.

4 weeks later I still do no have insurance. After calling up they told me that my records were never received.

Under HIPAA I know there is the privacy rule, but everything seems to indicate this only covers electronic data records. I cannot find any info relating to hard copy records...

Does any one know what the deal is for hard copy records? Are they protected by the same rule? What recourse, if any, do I have if my potential insurer lost my records and they have been comprimised?

Thanks in advance ATS




posted on Sep, 24 2013 @ 09:30 AM
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reply to post by Whatsreal
 


They are good at that sort of stuff, they seem to lose things that benefit the company if they are lost. It is mostly about deferring paying out money sometimes. It seems it is usually in their favor more than in ours. Get another copy and send it in I suppose, it got misplaced conveniently.



posted on Sep, 24 2013 @ 09:42 AM
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reply to post by Whatsreal
 


Call and ask for someone in management!!

If I understand you correctly, you hand delivered it to the actual building it was to go too, an "employee" of said company put it in an envelope to be conveniently put on an elevator to go up to the 41'st floor.....dadada....

Sounds to me like you did all the right things and they are the ones at fault!

Raise a little hell! It never hurts!



posted on Sep, 24 2013 @ 09:45 AM
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reply to post by Whatsreal
 


HIPPA does pertain to hard copies as well as electronic documents. If you have a lawyer, you might want him/her to contact those that have lost your records. It's amazing how fast things get done once a lawsuit is threatened.



posted on Sep, 24 2013 @ 10:02 AM
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reply to post by Whatsreal
 


I would check with the IRS.
If they don't have copies of your health records, I am fairly certain that the NSA does.



posted on Sep, 24 2013 @ 10:08 AM
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You can probably buy them off the black market quicker than finding them legitimately ;-)



posted on Sep, 24 2013 @ 10:11 AM
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Also in the UK we have a body called the Financial Ombudsman service. When you have a dispute or grievance with a company, (insurance for example) you submit your complaint to them and the company has 8 weeks to rectify it. If they dont, they get fined and the ombudsman go in and kick their ass. I sell insurance, and get threatened by customers alot saying they will go to FOS. Most of them dont have a case, but you would. Loss of documents by an insurance company is a big no no.Do you have anything like that in America?



posted on Sep, 24 2013 @ 10:35 AM
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Whatsreal
Hello ATS,

I turn to you for help as I could not find any good info relating to hard copies of medical records.

Here's what happened:

My wife and I applied for health isurance on our own from blue cross / blue shield for us and our 2 kids. Since she is on extended maternity leave, her work provided health insurance has run out. BX/BS is the same company which we were covered by from her work.

Not sure why, but they asked us for a copy of all my medical records, even though I was reasonably certain they already have a copy of these records considering the same company has insured me for the last 4 years. After obtaining a hard copy of my records from my primary care physician I dropped off a thick packet at the BXBS headquarters. The lady at the receiving office had me put the info into an envelope, mark it to be delivered to the right office (underwriting), and said it would be delivered there on the 41st floor by the end of the day.

4 weeks later I still do no have insurance. After calling up they told me that my records were never received.

Under HIPAA I know there is the privacy rule, but everything seems to indicate this only covers electronic data records. I cannot find any info relating to hard copy records...

Does any one know what the deal is for hard copy records? Are they protected by the same rule? What recourse, if any, do I have if my potential insurer lost my records and they have been comprimised?

Thanks in advance ATS


Unless you have some sort of absolute proof that your records have been "COMPROMISED" then what is the problem? None. They may have been lost or thrown away by accident. Who really cares?

And beyond that, who REALLY cares? Its not like your medical records can be used in some nefarious way to hurt you, so quit being so paranoid.



posted on Sep, 24 2013 @ 10:50 AM
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reply to post by phantomjack
 


Are you joking? Not even the police can just walk in and view medical records. There are things an individual may not want people to know about through fear of ridicule or blackmail. Also other people having your documents can help them commit identity theft. Which is a nightmare to fight, believe me.



posted on Sep, 24 2013 @ 10:51 AM
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Medical records professional here: there are two issues here; HIPAA relates to PRIVACY, in other words, if anyone either gossips about, misplaces your records, or otherwise mismanages the privacy of them, they are liable. Big time.

The other issue is that because of some incompetence somewhere, you're still without insurance and now have to deal with possible 'pre-existing condition' issues whereby you could conceivably be denied insurance based on their fook-up.

I would recommend first contacting upper management in the company, not a secretary, and go in person. Nicely explain the situation as you know it to be, tell that this is very distressing and you

1. Want them to find the errant paperwork to ensure that they haven't left the building or otherwise been compromised (believe me, no one who works there gives a damn about their contents, unless you're famous or something...).

and 2. Want your insurance to be reinstated and backdated immediately or a lawyer will be called. Believe me, somewhere a lawyer is drooling over this one and the insurance company knows it.

Edited to add: the papers probably got put inside someone else's file, mislabeled or they're sitting on the desk of someone who is out sick. Don't worry, they haven't been inadvertently thrown out. I'd hate to be the person in charge of finding them, though.
edit on 24-9-2013 by signalfire because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 24 2013 @ 10:52 AM
link   

Whatsreal
Hello ATS,

I turn to you for help as I could not find any good info relating to hard copies of medical records.

Here's what happened:

My wife and I applied for health isurance on our own from blue cross / blue shield for us and our 2 kids. Since she is on extended maternity leave, her work provided health insurance has run out. BX/BS is the same company which we were covered by from her work.

Not sure why, but they asked us for a copy of all my medical records, even though I was reasonably certain they already have a copy of these records considering the same company has insured me for the last 4 years. After obtaining a hard copy of my records from my primary care physician I dropped off a thick packet at the BXBS headquarters. The lady at the receiving office had me put the info into an envelope, mark it to be delivered to the right office (underwriting), and said it would be delivered there on the 41st floor by the end of the day.

4 weeks later I still do no have insurance. After calling up they told me that my records were never received.

Under HIPAA I know there is the privacy rule, but everything seems to indicate this only covers electronic data records. I cannot find any info relating to hard copy records...

Does any one know what the deal is for hard copy records? Are they protected by the same rule? What recourse, if any, do I have if my potential insurer lost my records and they have been comprimised?

Thanks in advance ATS


Why would you mail off the only known hard copy of your personal medical records without making copies of them first?



posted on Sep, 24 2013 @ 11:11 AM
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I want to take a moment, given the OP's experience, to remind everyone how CRITICALLY IMPORTANT it can be to have your OWN medical records. They'll argue, they'll fight and they'll try and tell you 10 different reasons why you can't have them. They'll happily watch you give up and walk away, too...as the majority of people do.

In the case of my wife and son? We didn't have that option for their medical issues so we have to fight for total lack of any other alternative. A couple years of it, in our case. In the end though, I do have several inches in each of several packs of documents to cover every aspect of their medical care. That is both sets of records and they're complete. Right down to doctor's notes in some cases (Which probably got included by mistake..but hell with 'em after what it took to get them)

Don't give up and don't get walked on. DEMAND your records..as they are, in the end YOURS to DEMAND. Just never lose sight of that...no matter what crap they shovel.

This thread is WHY it matters SO much.

edit on 24-9-2013 by Wrabbit2000 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 24 2013 @ 02:24 PM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


I've run into the medical community trying to keep my records from me as well. I usually give them a BS story about moving elsewhere and they give them to me for free. But the hospitals have always wanted something like .60 cents per page for copies. I give it to them as I believe it is money well spent in case something down the road happens.

My Father lost most of his medical history back in '72 when the military retired records warehouse burned down. He told me to keep copies, if not the originals of EVERYTHING when I enlisted. Good advice that has payed off after I retired myself.

I passed along that advice over the years and still to this day I have Soldiers asking me to write sworn statements saying they were injured/disabled during their time in service and they did not keep their records.

And with the exception of the IRS, we all know how well the Gov't keeps records. LOL
edit on 24-9-2013 by TDawgRex because: spelling



posted on Sep, 24 2013 @ 02:31 PM
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signalfire
Edited to add: the papers probably got put inside someone else's file, mislabeled or they're sitting on the desk of someone who is out sick. Don't worry, they haven't been inadvertently thrown out. I'd hate to be the person in charge of finding them, though.
edit on 24-9-2013 by signalfire because: (no reason given)


I've had that happen to me. I found a pregnancy test in my records once. And I'm a guy! LOL

But since I also have a common sounding name, I have recovered my records also from other peoples files as well.

When I took over as a US Army Reserve Unit Administrator (responsible for finance, medical, personnel and training records) it took me almost a year to unscrew the mess that was handed to me. The job had been vacant for over a year and people just threw paperwork into whatever file or sometimes even shredded it. One of the worst jobs ever until it was organized.




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