FOX 13 INVESTIGATES: Florida Blue responds to hundreds of complaints

- Janice Dubbin recovered from a blow to the head in her home in Ocoee. But after getting treated in a hospital, she took another hit when she got home.

She got a letter from Florida Blue stating her health insurance had been canceled, with no explanation. She said she never received a bill from Florida Blue, but bills from her time in the emergency room started pouring in.

She said she received around $40,000 in bills. Florida Blue did reinstate her policy, so those bills should be taken care of. But some medical providers don't know that yet, so she is still receiving bills. 

Meanwhile, in Tampa, Anita Kuhn had a similar mishap in her home.

"I fell downstairs, hit my head on the concrete floor and I hit my ribs on the toolbox," she said.

Kuhn signed up and paid for a Florida Blue policy. But for weeks, she said she didn't get a card, and did not show up in the system after her fall. So she paid hundreds of dollars for scan, x-ray and the doctor's visit. 

"[A Florida Blue representative] told me because I did a self-pay on the CAT scan and the x-ray, that they won't reimburse me probably," Kuhn told FOX 13 News.

She also received multiple bills from Florida Blue for varying amounts that she did not understand, and believes were issued in error.

And we found Anita and Janice are not alone. Florida's Department of Financial Services received 615 complaints from Florida Blue customers from January 1 through last week. That includes billing and customer service issues, and eleven people who say their accounts showed up as canceled.

Florida Blue says it's had a surge in members as other companies pulled out of the Florida marketplace, and is working to resolve all complaints. A spokeswoman provided the following response:

"During the last 90 days, Florida Blue has nearly doubled our Affordable Care Act (ACA) membership to just over 1 million members, due in part to the exit of other insurance carriers from the Marketplace.  We conducted a thorough review of the issues some members recently experienced and determined only a very small percentage of our members have encountered issues, though we take each one very seriously.  As we become aware of a member experiencing a problem, our Service team has been acting quickly to contact each person individually and promptly resolve the matter. We apologize for any frustration and inconvenience our members have experienced during this time. If any member continues to encounter issues with their plan, they should call the toll-free number on the back of their membership card or visit one of the five Florida Blue Center in the Tampa Bay region to receive face-to-face assistance."

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