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Father to sue CIGNA; daughter dies hours after insurer reversed decision to deny surgery

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Article
25 December 2007

Cigna stands by decision on transplant [USA]

Author: Lisa Girion, Los Angeles Times

A Friday funeral was set for the Northridge teenager who died last week after her insurer [Cigna] refused to pay for a liver transplant and then reconsidered. Meanwhile, the girl's health plan stood by its initial decision Monday.

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Article
22 December 2007

Statement from Michael Moore on the Death of Nataline Sarkisyan

Author: Michael Moore

"Today I call upon the Los Angeles district attorney to investigate and consider bringing criminal homicide charges against CIGNA Health Care for their role in the death of Nataline Sarkisyan. If their decision was one of incompetence, then manslaughter charges should be filed. If it was a premeditated decision -- where CIGNA knew in advance that Nataline would most likely die -- then their corporate officers should be arrested and the full extent of the law brought to bear upon them. "This is one more example of why we not only need universal health care for all our citizens, but also to eliminate the concept of private, profit-driven 'health care.'["]

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Article
21 December 2007

Father to sue insurer after liver transplant denied - Nataline Sarkisyan, 17, a leukemia sufferer, died hours after Cigna Healthcare reversed decision to deny surgery.

Author: Rick Orlov, Press-Telegram (USA)

The death of the teen came just hours after Cigna Healthcare - which had twice removed her from liver-transplant lists, saying the surgery was experimental - sent a notice that it had reversed its decision and would allow a transplant. In a statement Thursday, the company said it was making a rare exception in reversing its decision. "Based on the unique circumstances of this situation, and although it is outside the scope of the plan's coverage and despite the lack of medical evidence regarding the effectiveness of such treatment, Cigna HealthCare has decided to make an exception in this rare and unusual case and we will provide coverage should she proceed with the requested liver transplant," the statement said...Geragos, the Sarkisyan family's attorney, said he believes the company made the decision only after it knew the girl was dying...In addition to a civil suit against the company, Geragos said he will ask the District Attorney's Office to review whether the insurer's decisions should result in criminal charges of manslaughter.

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