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September 10, 2018

Claims moving forward against Cigna in alleged medical upcharge scheme

Litigation filed for a class of patients who allege they were overcharged for needed medical services and products will be allowed to proceed against Cigna Health and Life Insurance Co., U.S. District Judge Warren W. Eginton has ordered.

Motley Rice, with co-counsel, represents plaintiffs in the case, which is filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut.  

The litigation accuses Cigna of engaging in a scheme with home-care service provider CareCentrix that allowed the health insurance company to fraudulently inflate copayments and coinsurance paid by patients. For example, one plaintiff, a sleep-apnea patient, alleges he was charged a $25.68 for a disposable airway pressure filter from J&L Medical Services, one of more than 9,000 CareCentrix approved home care and service providers. Unbeknownst to him, J&L allegedly contracted with Cigna and CareCentrix to provide the device for only $7.50. The litigation alleges that Cigna knowingly pocketed the difference.

Another plaintiff in the case alleges Cigna charged her more than $2,000 for a blood test, claiming the procedure cost more than $17,000. The actual cost of the test was allegedly only $471. As a result, the suit alleges, Cigna was greatly enriched at a detriment to the patient.

A defense motion seeking to dismiss the litigation was denied Aug. 30, 2018, allowing claims against Cigna to proceed.

The case is Neufeld v. Cigna Health and Life Insurance Company et al., Case No.  3:17-cv-01693.

Read the complaint.