Sorry Oscar, There’s Just No Making this Stuff Simple

Discussion in 'Health Care Reform Forum' started by Brian Anderson, Dec 10, 2014.

  1. Brian Anderson
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    Brian Anderson Moderator Moderator

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    New article in Fortune (link below) details the growing pains of “Oscar,” the 18-month-old “hipster” health care company backed by $150 million in venture capital that has cheeky cartoon ads plastered all over New York City’s subway platforms.

    The story says the company had about 17,000 customers entering this year’s enrollment period, and Oscar says it now has a 10% market share for the health care exchange in New York. It began selling in New Jersey recently, and plans to expand to California and Texas by the end of next year.

    Story also says Oscar isn’t always delivering on its “no-surprises experience” due to the complexity of the healthcare system, but that doesn’t stop it from trying:

    “There are uncontrollable traps in the healthcare system. The complexity of this system is astounding and the immediate thing we can do is to make sure none of this happens is have you come through us.” – Oscar CEO Mario Schlosser

    Schlosser also said he’s less surprised by the complexity of insurance policies than he is of the unethical pricing practices from conventional health care providers, saying the billing tricks used by care providers would be “obviously fraud” in any other industry.

    How is Oscar, the hipster health insurance company, performing? - Fortune
     
  2. VolAgent
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    VolAgent Well-Known Member

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    So he is saying that isn't all just the insurance company's fault? Gasp!
     
  3. somarco
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    somarco Well-Known Member

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    According to Google, this guy has never really done anything in the real world but has a fair amount of academic accolades and techie awards.

    Kind of like putting a community organizer in charge of a country.
     
  4. Continuum
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    Continuum Member

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    Well I guess it made sense on paper
     
  5. RayNY
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    RayNY Well-Known Member

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    It should be retitled "Congratulations Oscar, You're better than every other insurer in the state!"

    I've had some clients bring this up to me. Specifically, the reviews mentioned in the article.

    "Despite Oscar's meager 2-star yelp review"

    Excuse me, it's 2.5 stars, which actually makes it the BEST REVIEWED CARRIER in the state.

    Scores are only useful in context, United, Aetna, Emblem, Easychoice/Atlantis (dead for 2015), BCBS (Empire, Excellus, and Anthem), Cigna, MetroPlus, and Fidelis all have 1-1.5 stars. Health Republic (the other startup for last year) is the only other insurer with 2 or more (2.3).

    If you read the reviews, you'll quickly notice almost all of the 1-star reviews would have been avoided if people dealt with a broker who explained the plan. 1-star reviews because they have a deductible before copays. 1-star reviews because out-of-network isn't covered. 1 star review because other people posted 1 star reviews (even though they never even applied to the company!). 1-star because ZocDoc didn't list Oscar on day one. Really?

    As silly as most of those 1-star reviews are, Oscar has replied to EVERY SINGLE ONE. They're the only company I've ever seen actually take the time to reply and offer assistance.
     
  6. Yagents
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    Yagents Well-Known Member

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  7. RayNY
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    RayNY Well-Known Member

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    Requested increases of 18+% on average, network is less than half the size (43,000+ to ~20,000 providers, 77 to 31 hospitals).

    They try to make themselves sound special, like they're the first to think of a narrow and "high quality" network. They spin this like it's an increase in quality, not a decrease in options.

    Reality is, they had all these "high quality" providers in network already... All that happened is that consumers lost the ability to see 23,000+ providers and 43 hospitals (many of which are top ranked) that are in-network now.
     
  8. somarco
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    somarco Well-Known Member

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    Will the millennial crowd notice, or even care? I presume that is still Oscar's target market.
     
  9. kgmom219
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    kgmom219 Well-Known Member

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    Nope.

    BTW...if you ever have a question for them, tweet it. Works like a charm :)
     
  10. somarco
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    somarco Well-Known Member

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    Thanks.

    If I ever (again) have a millennial I will keep that in mind. I created two millennials. That's enough.
     

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