Allen Salmon is a former physician who is now active in efforts to bring about univeersal health care for all Americans and in the meantime force the insurance company to stop excluding people because of gender, race and income.
Almost no corporation can claim a more vital role in passing a the health care reform law. This is not to say that WellPoint supported health reform; quite the opposite. But as President Obama's June 8 YouTube address demonstrated not for the first time, WellPoint is a uniquely maladroit corporate heavy. If it didn't exist, Obama might have had to invent it.
"[W]hen we found out that an insurance company was systematically dropping the coverage of women diagnosed with breast cancer," Obama said in the address, "my administration demanded that they end the practice immediately." Obama did not name the company, but it was WellPoint, and news of the practice was broken by Reuters in a news story by Murray Waas,. As it so happens, Murray Waas is an investigative reporter who also happens to be a cancer survivor. Murray Waas reported that WellPoint
was using a computer algorithm that automatically targeted … all policyholders recently diagnosed with breast cancer. The software triggered a fraud investigation