By Chad Arias / Asst. Opinions Editor
By Chad Arias / Asst. Opinions Editor
Once again, another poor soul has been thrown under the bus by the health care giant, Anthem Blue Cross.
Ephram Nehme is a resident of Malibu, California needed a life saving liver transplant.
Blue Cross approved of his procedure so long as it was done at UCLA medical center.
What they did not take into account is that California has the biggest population among the United States.
This means waitlists for transplants can leave a person waiting for years and years. Since 2006, Nehme’s liver disease has been rapidly progressing.
Hepatologist Dr. Sammy Saab suggested that Nehme should go to the University of Indiana where the waitlists are much shorter.
Saab believed that Nehme’s condition was worsening and if a transplant was not performed shortly it could be fatal.
The only problem with going to Indiana is that it is out of Blue Crosses “network.”
Their network has geographical boundaries, which in the event that they are exceeded Blue Cross will not cover any of the costs for the procedure.
Nehme had to a pay the whopping amount of $205,000 from his own personal funds.
Outraged by the health insurance company, Nehme filed a civil lawsuit that is under way at the Los Angeles Superior Court.
Nehme claims that his condition was life threatening and the University of Indiana was his only option.
Blue Cross counters by saying “it was determined that Mr. Nehme’s condition did not present medical urgency to require an emergency [out-of-network] transplant.”
In order to take down a major corporation like Blue Cross, Nehme will have to prove that basically it was a life or death situation.
With a successful verdict for Nehme he will be able to help other victims get faster and cheaper transplants.
Nehme considers himself lucky to have had the funds to make the operation possible.
However, not every American has $200,000 that they can fully pay out of pocket.
Health insurance companies in general make their revenues off giving the consumer a “peace of mind” feeling.
In the event of an illness, the insured person is protected from having to pay high priced medical bills.
In this case, Blue Cross failed to fulfill their duties to Nehme. As public knowledge of this event spreads, so will the call for health care reform.
The health care system in America is a major political issue that is being fought over by Congress.
There seems to be no solution to the ever growing problem.
Blue Cross is not a charity organization nor are their intentions anywhere near to helping the public.
Blue Cross is a money hungry insurance company that ultimately will do anything in their power to avoid paying its customers medical bills.
Americans are now opening their eyes to the reality that maybe health care should be run by the government.
This at least would make health care a public service rather than a multi-billion dollar industry.
Blue Cross increases its revenues the more people it stomps on.
This leaves the victim with no choice but to either die on a waiting list or go into so much the debt that they might as well be dead.
What happened to Mr. Nehme is a tragedy, but what can we as Americans do to stop it?
The government has to step in and intervene somehow.
Injustices like Nehme’s are happening across America every day, and who knows? You could be next.
Blue Cross needs to man up and show their loyal customers (who pay outrageous premiums every month) a little compassion and respect.
Lets face it though, we don’t live in Never Never Land. America is the most greed-driven nation in the world.
We are an individualist society in which it doesn’t matter how people you crush on your conquest to the top.
Civilians need a savior to drive out these demonic corporations that are obsessed with destroying lives and adding to their bank accounts.
Mr. President, you and you alone have the power to save this country, so hit us with your best shot.