WellPoint Makes Its Way Into National Debate on Health Care Reform
Last week, WellPoint made more than three million computer-generated phone calls as part of an early effort to get involved in the expected health care reform debate in Congress, the Sacramento Bee reports.
WellPoint is the parent company of Anthem Blue Cross of California.
WellPoint spokesperson Cheryl Leamon said the insurer connected with 140,000 people through the calls, 66,000 of whom said they were interested in receiving information about health care reform from the company and would consider participating in town hall meetings that the insurer might convene.
Reform Supporters on Guard
The move drew criticism from proponents of health care reform, some of whom said the effort was reminiscent of WellPoint's campaign against Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's (R) plan to overhaul California's health care system in 2007.
Moreover, the Bee reports that WellPoint is expected to play a significant role in the health care debate in Congress, in part because of its heavy reliance on income from individual health insurance policies.Â Income from those policies could take a hit if the federal government creates a public health plan option, according to the Bee (Calvan, Sacramento Bee, 4/24).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.