Patsy Bates had cancer. She also had health insurance. When her health insurance company found out about her illness it quickly dropped her coverage.
The 51 year-old California woman has been fighting Health Net for years. A California arbitration judge has now ordered Health Net to pay $9.4 million in damages for what he described as the insurer's "reprehensible" conduct.
Health Net said in a statement that, while it does not agree with some of the arbitrator's conclusions, it will immediately adopt a review process for all policy cancellations.
Bates is hardly alone in her battle against health plans. The Department of Labor says some 91,000 complaints are filed every year...experts believe many other disputes are settled before they get that far. The Kaiser Family Foundation says nearly half of all consumers report some kind of problem with their health plans.
We would like to hear your stories...good and bad.
Have you had a particularly pleasant experience with your healthcare provider? Have you experienced a nightmare like Patsy Bates? Either way, I would like to hear from you. You can post your comments here, or email them directly to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I may consider them for a future report.