Sunday, July 14, 2013

Wendell Potter: Former Health Insurance Insider, Now Whistleblower

I recently discovered Wendell Potter. He's a former health insurance executive turned whistleblower, and boy is he spilling.
"Since I walked away as head of communications at a top health insurance company in May of 2008, I've worked tirelessly as an outspoken critic of corporate PR and the distortion and fear manufactured by America’s health insurance industry. It is a PR juggernaut that is bankrolled by millions of dollars, rivaling lobbying budgets and underwriting many "non-partisan" and "grassroots" organizations."
Here's his book:
Deadly Spin

Here's his website and blog. He's even on Twitter.

Potter worked at CIGNA, one of the largest health insurance companies in the US, as VP of corporate communications. From Wikipedia:
Potter began his journey towards resigning and becoming a whistleblower in July 2007, when he saw a touring free clinic run by Remote Area Medical in rural Virginia.
"What he saw appalled him. Hundreds of desperate people, most without any medical insurance, descended on the clinic from out of the hills. People queued in long lines to have the most basic medical procedures carried out free of charge. Some had driven more than 200 miles from Georgia. Many were treated in the open air. Potter took pictures of patients lying on trolleys on rain-soaked pavements."
In an interview published in 2011 by, Potter said: "It’s to the insurers’ advantage for it to be complicated and confusing and hard to deal with insurance companies. They profit as a result of the confusion."
Can you attest to that bit about complicated and confusing? Premiums, deductibles, copays, coinsurance, in-network/out-of-network, health savings accounts, health spending accounts, drug formularies, coverage limits, enrollment deadlines, reimbursement guidelines ... Dear God...


1 comment:

Angela and Melinda said...

He's absolutely terrific. Have heard him interviewed often on MSNBC. Top notch! Good post, Bix.