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February 12, 2008

Health Care Rescinded


What if you thought you had insurance, were paying your monthly premiums, got sick and got treatment - and then were notified that your insurance was being canceled retroactively, leaving you with huge medical bills?

That's what happened to Patsy Bates. After she switched insurance companies to save money, Patsy was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer in September of 2003. She had surgery, and then in the middle of chemotherapy she was notified that her policy had been canceled retroactively because of incorrect information. She was left with nearly $200,000 in bills.

Patsy was able to get state coverage to complete her chemotherapy, but she still has a catheter in her chest that no one will remove until she's proven to be cancer-free.

Badgered by bill collectors, Patsy found an attorney who sued the insurance company. In the process she discovered that an underwriter was given bonuses for meeting quotas of insurance policy cancellations. The case went to arbitration and Patsy is waiting for the results.


Like many Americans, Neil Smith was curious about China. When he got an urge to get out of town, he found a position in China teaching English.

Neil ended up in Hulu Dao City, in northeastern China, where it's often freezing cold. One day, he decided to take a walk on the beach that everyone had been telling him about. He soon found himself trapped by the tide, and he had to climb a rock wall to safety. After wandering through the woods for an hour or so, Neil came upon what he thought was a little house, but it turned out to be a guard station ... on a military base. The Chinese authorities thought Neil was a spy. 

Neil talks with Dick Gordon about how he talked his way out of trouble.

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