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Blog Post
2/9/2010
Posted by Judy Dugan
Yeah, you know the phrase: You've "jumped the shark" by doing something too monumentally stupid to be believed: Like when the Fonz, with leather jacket still affixed, water-skied over the man-eating shark in "Happy Days". Blue Cross's shark-jumper was its 39% health insurance premium hikes, as other prices flatlined or dropped...
News Release
2/9/2010
CONTACT CONTACT: Jerry Flanagan, 310-889-4912; or Carmen Balber, 202-629-3043
Consumer Watchdog Also Warns Against Insurer-favored 'Cost Solution': Selling Policies That Amount To 'A Cardboard Box to Replace Our Apartment' Washington, DC -- Blue Cross has opened an opportunity for lawmakers and regulators with its premium hikes of up to 39% in California, said Consumer Watchdog. In the face of questions from the White...
Blog Post
2/8/2010
Posted by Judy Dugan
Those of us who have health insurance--or think we have health insurance--can get complacent about whether the nation needs that big, complicated health reform legislation. But just try getting sick. Is your insurance even real? If it is, can you afford it after the latest round of price hikes? Is your deductible so big that paying it will mean...
News Release
2/1/2010
CONTACT CONTACT: Jerry Flanagan, (310) 889-4912; or Carmen Balber, (202) 629-3043
Consumer Watchdog Also Releases Dozen 'Better Than Nothing' Reforms To Curb Insurance Abuses, Aid States    Washington, D.C. -- Consumer Watchdog issued a warning today in a letter to President Obama and Congressional leaders against the health reform fallback proposals of some Congressional moderates, including deregulated national...
News Release
1/26/2010
CONTACT CONTACT: Jerry Flanagan, 310-889-4912; or Carmen Balber, 202-629-3043
Washington, D.C. -- Consumer Watchdog urged President Obama to watch Sunday’s Dateline NBC documentary on patients who have insurance but not adequate coverage, then pledge in his State of the Union address tomorrow to deal with the lack of legal accountability for insurers and lack of adequate representation for consumers in the federal...
Blog Post
1/25/2010
Poste by Jamie Court
Here's the full link to last night's excellent Dateline NBC "Critical Condition," which followed patients as they were turned down by their health insurers for critical care. Consumer Watchdog worked closely with Dateline on the piece. And I was in the room when former CIGNA executive Wendell Potter and mourning mom Hilda Sarkysian met...
Blog Post
1/19/2010
Posted by Judy Dugan
The Washington Post today has an eye-opening story today on how a family ended up in crushing debt at an "in-network" hospital apparently jammed with out-of-network doctors. Tens of thousands of dollars later, their little boy's rare and deadly heart defect is at least semi-fixed, but the family finances are in ruins. It's a problem that...
Blog Post
1/12/2010
Posted by Judy Dugan
California has been a leader in patients rights, largely in response to abuses  by HMOs that, for instance, tried to eject new mothers and babies from the hospital a few hours after giving birth, and attempted to require "drive-by mastectomies."  The federal health reform bill could weaken or do away with all that, including a...
News Release
1/12/2010
CONTACT CONTACT: Jerry Flanagan, (310) 889-4912; or Carmen Balber, (202) 629-3043
Washington, D.C. -- In a letter sent to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) today, Consumer Watchdog called for strengthened oversight of the health insurance industry and greater affordability protections for consumers in negotiations with the U.S. Senate on final health reform legislation. In the letter, Consumer Watchdog wrote: "With the...
Blog Post
1/5/2010
Judy Dugan
It's clear that any final version of health reform will be controlled by private, largely for-profit insurance companies. Their aim, once you strip out the P.R., is to make more money, not to give you better care. To keep fighting back, we need the help of insiders--the people who know the secrets of the health insurance industry. Former corporate...