The Kansas Department of Insurance has ordered an Internet business based in Washington to discontinue its references to the state’s currently non-existent health insurance exchange. The business – My HIX Insurance Exchange – claimed to sell insurance policies through the insurance exchange of Kansas. Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger has issued the cease and desist order, demanding that the site’s manager to remove all references of the exchange from the site. Commissioner Praeger fears that this misrepresentation may have done significant harm to the state’s already dubious plans to pursue and exchange.
The website attempted to sell health insurance policies that were allegedly linked to the Kansas health insurance exchange. The exchange does not actually exist, however, and will not until late 2013 at the earliest. Commissioner Praeger says that many of the provisions found in the Affordable Care Act, especially those concerning insurance exchanges, are greatly misrepresented. The site may have caused widespread confusion amongst consumers who are already weary of exchange programs.
The owner of the site is not a licensed insurance agent in Kansas, which may lead regulators to take legal action against him. Regulators say that the website existed to collect consumer information, which would then be sold to insurers and agents as leads for potential profits. The Kansas Department of Insurance is urging those that may think they have been taken advantage of to notify regulators so that the matter can be resolved.