Survey: Health insurance industry has worst customer service

When it comes to customer service, health insurance companies rank dead last. In a survey rating 206 companies across 18 industries, U.S. consumers gave the health insurance industry the lowest scores, according to the Temkin Group, a customer service consulting company.

Insurers received "poor" or "very poor" marks and were one of only three industries to receive an average rating of "poor" as part of the 2012 Temkin Experience Ratings, reported UPI.

Kaiser Permanente received the highest marks among the 13 health plans covered in the survey, ranking 67th. However, it only received an "okay" rating and ranked 87th overall, according to the North Colorado Business Report.

TriCare, Medicare, Aetna, UnitedHealth, Humana, Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield, Blue Shield of California and Cigna all received "poor" ratings. Four plans--Highmark BCBS, Health Net, Medicaid, and Anthem BCBS--received "very poor" ratings and ranked in the bottom seven across all 18 industries, according to a Temkin blog post.

The sliver of good news can be found in the small two percentage-point improvement in insurers' customer service ranking between the 2011 and 2012 surveys. "It's troubling that only one healthcare plan can even achieve an (OK) rating; the entire industry needs a customer experience wake-up call," said Bruce Temkin, managing partner for Temkin Group. "While it's great to see some improvement, it's not enough."

To learn more:
- access the Temkin survey
- check out the UPI article
- see the North Colorado Business Report article
- read the Temkin blog post

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