Anthem Blue Cross parent WellPoint Inc. agreed Monday to pay $11.8 million to settle claims from about 480 California hospitals that it failed to cover the bills of patients it dropped after they were treated — a controversial practice known as rescission.
The hospitals sued after scores of their patients contended in their own lawsuits that Blue Cross had illegally dropped them.
The patients said Blue Cross had improperly investigated their medical histories after they submitted expensive bills in an effort to use purported preexisting conditions as an excuse for canceling their policies.
Anthem Blue Cross still faces separate class-action suits from the state’s physicians over bills from patients the company canceled after they treated them. It also faces a class-action suit filed on behalf of more than 6,000 patients dropped by the company since 2001.
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