Dentists in Cook County, IL, were more likely to provide emergency treatment to children who had private insurance than to those on Medicaid, even if the dentists were enrolled in the state’s Medicaid program, according to a new study. Medicaid typically pays less than private insurance plans, and experts say there’s “little market motivation” for practitioners to take on those patients, rather than just going with those who have private insurance. [More]
Insurers have to maintain a safety net of money to protect themselves from unforeseen market conditions, but a new study from Consumers Union says that some Blue Cross Blue Shield insurers took it too far, preferring to focus exclusively on stockpiling cash at the expense of customers. Two of the worst cases have stockpiles 5 to 7 times higher than state solvency requirements, yet continue to hike premiums each year instead of using the, uh, surplus surplus to offset customer costs. [More]
According to internal insurance industry documents recently released to the press, the reasons health insurers cite to deny insurance to private individuals is limited only by one’s imagination: cops. firefighters, construction workers, and war correspondents are among the occupations that some insurance companies have considered deal breakers. Similarly, acne, allergies, ADD, and even bunions have caused companies to deny customers coverage.
Tonik is the rad, x-treme! lifestyle health insurance for young people who can’t afford regular insurance—sort of the Poochie of health insurance, except it’s not going to go away. Aasma wrote to us to let us know that when she signed up for it over the weekend, she got a nasty surprise after she submitted her credit card information.
The LA Times says that doctors are objecting to a letter sent by Blue Cross of California requesting that the docs help “indentify members who have failed to disclose medical conditions on their application that may be considered pre-existing.”
The LA Times says that the State of California is seeking a $12.6 million dollar fine against Blue Shield for 1,262 violations of claims-handling laws that resulted in 200 people losing their insurance. Blue Cross and Blue Shield have already been fined $1 million for improperly terminating the policies of the sick and pregnant.
The state of California is fining the company $1 million as a result. Not that that will help the hundreds of people who lost their coverage.
Getting health insurance held up by bureaucratic red tape is one thing… but magnetic tape?
Blue Cross has been up to some shillyshallying in California…