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Scammers sell fake Premier Health insurance plans

Residents are warned that scammers are posing as Premier Health insurance representatives.

Premier Health had previously sold Premier-branded health insurance plans but the division was shut down earlier this year.

MORE: Premier Health shutting down insurance business

Now state officials say that consumers from across the country are receiving numerous automated calls selling Premier Health Plan insurance. Some consumers have received “premium” invoices in lieu of a call, or have noticed unauthorized charges on their bank accounts.

“We are making sure Ohio consumers are aware of this scam and urging them to contact the Ohio Department of Insurance if they have been contacted or victimized,” Ohio Department of Insurance Director Jillian Froment said in a statement. “Ohioans need to know that Premier Heath Plan is not selling health insurance products in Ohio. The individuals behind the scam want to steal consumers’ bank account information and money, and have no intention of providing health insurance.”

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Premier Health Plan, as of April 1, 2018, no longer offers health insurance products.

MORE: Good Samaritan Hospital has officially closed

As part of the telephone scam, consumers interested in purchasing health insurance are routed to an individual who asks for their bank account information.

Those not interested in receiving future calls are referred to Premier Health Plan’s actual website or are told to call Premier Health Plan’s actual member call center. Those who have received bills have indicated the invoice is generated on what appears to be Premier Health Plan letterhead. The unauthorized charges identified on bank account statements have shown up as “Premier Heal.”

To avoid being the victim of an insurance fraud scam, Froment recommends the following:

• Don’t answer calls from an unknown number or pay an invoice from a company you don’t recall having an insurance policy with.

• If you receive an automated call, don’t say anything and hang up.

• If you answered a call that you believed was a scam, write the number down and report it to the proper authorities.

• Never give personal or financial information to someone over the phone.

• Review bank account and credit card statements monthly and report unauthorized charges to your financial institution.

If you’ve been contacted about purchasing Premier Health Plan insurance, call the Ohio Department of Insurance at 1-800-686-1527 or submit information on the department’s website at www.insurance.ohio.gov.

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