ED Magedson – Founder
Aetna Lied about coverage then denied claim for cancer patient's wig Internet
In December of 2012 I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I was told with all certainty that I would lose my hair when I underwent chemotherapy which would start mid January 2013. I had heard through friends that sometimes health insurance companies will cover the cost of a wig. I called, asked and was told Yes, they cover 90% of the cost of a wig for cancer patients, up to $500 max. I asked what I needed to do and she said simply go to a wig store, purchase it, and go to the aetna website for a claims form and then mail it with receipt for reimbursement. I was happy and did so. On January 5, 2013, I purchased a wig at a local store.
Upon completing the claim form, I had questions. The form asked for codes that I knew nothing about. I called Aetna (Call #2) and she said that to list the name of the wig store on the receipt and that was all I needed to do. I did so. Mailed it. Heard nothing back for a month or more.
Called Aetna (Call #3). I was told that the claim was not processed because it lacked a code number of some sort. He said that it was a small detail and he could easily fix it right then and submit it again and I should get a check within a couple of weeks. Waited another month-no check.
Called again (Call #4). Was told well actually your claim was denied because you didn't use an in-network wig provider. This was the VERY first time I heard of this stipulation, and absolutely did not know Aetna had even a list of wig providers. I would have Happily gone to one of your wig providers if in fact I had been told there was such a list. When I originally called regarding benefits I was certainly NOT told to go to one in-network to receive those benefits. Now, I am out $500. I most definitely would not have spent $500 on a wig if I had known I would not be reimbursed for it. I foolishly thought that Aetna was sympathetic to a cancer patient losing their hair.
I have appealed this once before and was only repeated the policy of using an in network provider. My problem is... I NEVER WAS TOLD THERE WAS SUCH A THING AS AN IN NETWORK WIG PROVIDER. In fact, I was told the opposite.
Additionally, upon looking at the list of providers for wigs for Tampa (after I was out $500 and my claim was denied), there was only one store. It was not primarily a wig store and had only a handful of colors and styles. Certainly not going to work.
Ultimately I was reimbursed around $43 for the $500 wig.
I am here to say that Aetna representatives are not aware or do not understand their In-network Wig Provider policy. They are obviously not telling customers about it and are leaving cancer patients with hefty bills that they are originally told they would be reimbursed for. A shame- and on such a sensitive product for a cancer patient.
Aetna shafts cancer patients and takes NO responsibility for the erroneous information they tell customers. Who is the only one hurt when a rep tells the customer incorrect information? The customer and Aetna does not take any responsibility for the words that their reps say.
This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 05/14/2013 01:11 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/aetna/internet/aetna-lied-about-coverage-then-denied-claim-for-cancer-patients-wig-internet-1050908. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.
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