Blue Cross/Blue Shield Under Gun for Refusing Ryan White Payments for HIV Care

The insurance company is facing a federal civil rights action because it is refusing to accept Ryan White funds to pay for insurance policies for people living with HIV. Now Lambda Legal is getting involved.

BY Todd Heywood

February 11 2014 12:17 PM ET

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana is facing a federal discrimination complaint over a decision to reject third party payments from the state's Ryan White funding programs. 

Lambda Legal and AIDSLaw of Louisiana filed the action with the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Civil Rights on Feb. 10. 

The insurance company has claimed that it instituted the policy of rejecting third party payments from non-family members in response to a federal rule meant to crack down on insurance fraud, reports Reuters news agency.  But the Lambda brief makes clear, the federal government has rejected such ideology and specifically issued guidance to insurance companies to accept payments from Ryan White funded programs.

The news has resulted in a petition demanding Blue Cross Blue Shield rescind its actions related to Ryan White funded subsidies for health insurance programs.