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Karen Boe Gatlin
Karen Boe Gatlin
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Insurance Companies Limit Payments

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Some insurance carriers, including Aetna Insurance Company, have decided that they will not provide payment for treatment of conditions that were caused by medical negligence. Such restriction on payment include foreign objects left in patients during surgeries and procedures (instruments, packing, sponges); bedsores arising during admissions; incorrect blood transfusions; patient falls; surgery on the wrong limb; performance of the wrong procedure or surgery; wandering patients who leave the facility; sexual assault on patients; and contaminated devices or drugs. Critics are concerned that the cost of treatment of these patients will be passed on to the general patient population by increasing their charges. Others believe that the restrictions will improve the quality of medical care and decrease medical negligence. The companies appear to be following the lead of Medicare which made similar restrictions several months ago.