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Pay no attention to the people behind the curtain

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Milwaukee-based insurer targeted HIV patients for recission

by folkbum

Reuters--and not the Milwaukee media--has the story:
By winning the verdict against Fortis [now known as Assurant Health], Mitchell not only obtained a measure of justice for himself; he also helped expose wrongdoing on the part of Fortis that could have repercussions for the entire health insurance industry.

Previously undisclosed records from Mitchell's case reveal that Fortis had a company policy of targeting policyholders with HIV. A computer program and algorithm targeted every policyholder recently diagnosed with HIV for an automatic fraud investigation, as the company searched for any pretext to revoke their policy. As was the case with Mitchell, their insurance policies often were canceled on erroneous information, the flimsiest of evidence, or for no good reason at all, according to the court documents and interviews with state and federal investigators. [. . .]

Insurance companies have long engaged in the practice of "rescission," whereby they investigate policyholders shortly after they've been diagnosed with life-threatening illnesses. But government regulators and investigators who have overseen the actions of Assurant and other health insurance companies say it is unprecedented for a company to single out people with HIV.
Is this really the kind of behavior Mark Neumann and Paul Ryan want to stand behind as they oppose health care reform? Disgusting.

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