Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Insurance Outrage of the Day

Remember that horrible tornado that wrecked Joplin, Missouri back in May that killed all those people?

Leave to one insurance company to almost make a bad situation worse. Even as other insurance companies came through.
A workman' s comp insurer made this horrible disaster
even worse for one Joplin, Mo. man,

This insurance company Accident Fund Insurance Company of America, reversed itself and did the right thing, though, after an  Associated Press article on the outrage appeared, as described below.

Nothing like bad publicity to prompt a change of heart, huh?

Here's the deal: A guy named Mark Lindquist, a social worker, cared for three developmentally disabled adults. The tornado was coming. He could have fled, or stayed home, where the tornado didn't go.

Instead, he covered the three men with a mattress and laid down on top of the mattress in a last-ditch effort to save them from the tornado. But the storm's 200 mph winds were too much. The three men died, and Lindquist was greviously injured. He accumulated $2.5 million in medical bills.

According to the Associated Press, via Huffington Post, Lindquist was  denied a workman's comp claim.

This was ""based on the fact that there was no greater risk than the general public at the time you were involved in the Joplin tornado," according to a letter to Lindquist from Accident Fund Insurance Company of America, his company's workers' comp provider.

Again, Lindquist could have fled and left the three disabled men to their own devices, but didn't. So doesn't it seem Lindquist was in fact at a greater risk because he stayed with them?

Yes, I know that $2.5 million is a lot of money. And that would damage the company's bottom line. And it's true Lindquist didn't have private health insurance, because he couldn't afford it on his salary.   

I'm not entirely sure what the solution is, but the one we've got here sure doesn't work. I guess the insurance company agreed with the audience at a Republican presidential candidates' debate earlier this year. If you don't have private insurance, and you have a catastrophic medical emergency, you should just die, sucka!

The insurance company said later Monday it reversed its decision after reviewing information on the case. Like what appeared in the Associated Press article.

It's scary, though, what happens when an outrage like this doesn't make the papers, the Internet or television news.

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