She’s Alive, Despite What Her Insurance Company Thought

December 11, 2006

Margaret C. Morris and her insurance company now agree: She’s alive.

Several months ago, her insurance company, Medicare or both, dropped her coverage because they presumed the 95-year-old Bellevue, Neb. resident was dead.

“It’s disgusting and it’s irritating and it’s frustrating, and if you can think of any other words, go ahead and use them,” Morris said. “And I’m not dead. I’m not even close to it.”

Morris’ daughter, Margaret Spring, said the problem started when she fired her mother’s hospice nurse. Spring thinks a hospice agency official checked the wrong box or typed in the wrong code when the agency was dismissed, making Medicare, and, later, her insurer, _ believe Morris was dead.

She would not name the agency.

“I just want her back among the living,” Spring said of her mother’s situation. “It’s not funny.”

Spring estimated that she has spent $1,500 on prescriptions for her mother that should have been paid by insurance.

On Friday, United American Insurance Co., which handled Morris’ Medicare prescription coverage, checked with the regional Medicare office. It verified that Morris was indeed among the living.

So Morris’ coverage was reactivated, and the company told Spring that she would be reimbursed for the prescription expenses.

“She is officially among the living,” Spring said of her mom.

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