Eli Kirshbaum | Apr 15, 2021
One-in-four calls from brokers and insurers selling health plans to Texans were deemed to be deceptive and merited a report to the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI), according to Rep. Eddie Lucio III. He introduced a bill in the House Insurance Committee this week that aims to reduce these deceptive marketing practices, alongside a similar bill from Rep. Stephanie Klick.
Lucio introduced his bill to the committee:
“Sales of alternative health plans have increased in recent years, and as a result, reports from median researchers about misleading and deceptive sales practices have risen. Consumers are being misled through deceptive information — almost always through telemarketing calls.”
The sponsor explained that most of these deceptive calls involve individuals selling alternative health plans (health care sharing ministries, association health plans, etc.) using false claims that they provide the same comprehensive coverage as Affordable Care Act (ACA) plans.
“The problem occurs when a sales representative purposely conflates ACA protections with non-ACA coverage to mislead consumers. These documented abuses do not involve local agents but are primarily linked to call centers, telemarketers and sales representatives that will never meet the shopper or consumer in person.”
The bill would require telemarketing representatives to record their calls and make them accessible to TDI….