eHealthInsurance’s Latest Technology Drops Time Needed to Complete an Application From An Average of 21 Days to Real Time
Sunnyvale, Calif. – April 2, 2002 – eHealthInsurance has built a completely paperless process to enable consumers to apply for health insurance online in real time, replacing the health insurance industry’s traditional paper-based application process that took consumers an average of 21 days to complete. eHealthInsurance, the nation’s leading source for individual, family and small business health insurance, today announced its patent-pending Electronic Processing Interchange (EPI) technology, becoming the first company to completely process health insurance applications electronically. EPI, which includes electronic forms presentment, signatures and payments, can reduce the number of steps necessary to process an application by 40 percent. This provides clear benefits for both consumers and health insurance companies.
David Yee, of Union City, California, one of the more than 100,000 customers who have purchased health plans from eHealthInsurance, and the first customer to use the EPI technology for his health insurance application, found that EPI made the application process quick and easy. “I was amazed at how fast and painless it was to apply for health insurance online,” said Yee. “The application process was simple. I answered the questions over the Internet, used an electronic signature and paid my first monthly premium with a credit card. I never had to wait for the paper application to come in the mail just so that I could sign it. I was able to complete the entire process online.”
Several major health insurance carriers across the country have already integrated eHealthInsurance’s EPI technology into their underwriting process. These companies include Golden Rule, Blue Shield of California, Fortis Health, HealthNet of California, Kaiser of Georgia, American Medical Securities (AMS) and WellPoint Networks, which owns Blue Cross of California and UNICARE. eHealthInsurance’s carrier partners benefit from EPI technology and processes as it makes the underwriting process more efficient and simple, and provides a turnkey solution for speeding up the approval process, including Web-based, real-time reporting. A special icon next to health insurance plans from companies that have elected to participate in the EPI program indicates to eHealthInsurance customers that the application process for those plans will be the fastest, most efficient way to apply for health insurance.
“The normal health insurance underwriting process requires time and follow up with brokers and applicants to ensure that applications are properly completed,” said Susan Fowler, vice president of sales at Golden Rule Insurance Company. “eHealthinsurance’s electronic processing system is reducing the up-front steps and application errors before they get to us, enabling faster service to our customers.”
Golden Rule uses EPI to process individual and family health insurance applications in 24 states through www.ehealthinsurance.com.
The EPI technology is also made available as part of the eHealthSystems product portfolio. The recently launched eHealthSystems operating unit (www.ehealthsystems.com) will market eHealthInsurance’s patent-pending technology as an e-commerce alternative to health insurance carriers and their broker networks nationwide. Health insurance companies will use the technology for online sales of their own health plans to consumers directly or through their brokers.
“eHealthInsurance is leading the charge to bring the entire health insurance purchasing process online, with the advent of EPI technology and the launch of licensing our e-commerce capabilities to independent health insurance companies,” said Gary Lauer, chief executive officer of eHealthInsurance. “We fully understand that the offline, paper-intensive application process can be difficult, time-consuming and a barrier for individuals to quickly obtain affordable health insurance. We are completely focused on improving the process for carriers and, most importantly, for consumers.”
Founded in 1997, eHealthInsurance (www.ehealthinsurance.com/) markets individual, family and small business health insurance and was responsible for the nation’s first Internet-based sale of a health insurance policy. The company has become the leading source for health insurance in the country by offering the broadest selection of health insurance companies and plans nationwide at the best available prices. The company delivers unparalleled customer service through qualified customer service professionals.
eHealthInsurance is funded by The Sprout Group (Credit Suisse First Boston), Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Goldman Sachs, Lightspeed Venture Partners (formerly Weiss, Peck & Greer Venture Partners), QuestMark Partners and Dell Computer. The management team and board include former or current executives of Aetna, Arthur Andersen, TRW Systems, Foundation Health, Healtheon, Hewlett Packard, IBM, MetLife, PacifiCare, Silicon Graphics, United Healthcare, Viewpoint Corporation (formerly MetaCreations) and other leading healthcare and technology companies.
eHealthInsurance.com is the registered trademark of eHealthInsurance Services, Inc.
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