Thursday, October 20, 2011

Be Aware: Be Wary

Don't Be Fooled by Health Survey

Recently a call came in from a health insurance company contractor requesting information in the form of a survey or questionnaire. The caller proceeded to ask me to verify my name, address, and birthdate--to make sure I was the right person. Red Flag. I rang off and called the health insurance company to verify the existence of a contractor survey, which they did verify.

A week later the same caller called and asked the same questions. This time I verified my identity and answered a few of the questions--enough to realize that the "questionnaire" was the standard doctor's office questionnaire on personnel health --have you ever had heart problems, what medications are you taking... and the like. I believe this information is the information that is protected under the Health Information Privacy laws. At that point I stopped the interview and asked to be put on their do-not-call list.

To be fair, I should say that the caller stated that I was not required to answer any of the questions and that I could stop the interview at any time. Which I did. But be aware and be wary if you should get such a call. It's the insurance provider looking to get your personal health information. This information is personal, private, and not the business of insurance companies.

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