A 17-year old died just hours after her health insurance company reversed its decision not to pay for a liver transplant that doctors said the girl needed.
Nataline Sarkisyan died Thursday night at about 6 p.m. at University of California, Los Angeles Medical Center. She had been in a vegetative state for weeks, said her mother, Hilda
Doctors at UCLA determined she needed a transplant and sent a letter to CIGNA Healthcare on Dec. 11. The Philadelphia-based health insurance company denied payment for the transplant.
CIGNA said in an e-mail statement before she died that there was a lack of medical evidence showing the procedure would work in Nataline's case, the AP reports.
The University of California, Los Angeles (generally known as UCLA) is a public research university located in Los Angeles, California, United States.
UCLA comprises the College of Letters and Science (the primary undergraduate college), as well as four other undergraduate colleges (Arts and Architecture, Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Nursing, and Theater, Film, and Television), seven professional schools, and five professional Health Science schools. Since 2001, UCLA has enrolled over 33,000 total students, and that number is steadily rising.
UCLA is ranked 25th among "National Universities" by U.S. News and World Report. UCLA placed 13th in the world in 2007 in ranking done by the Shanghai Jiao Tong University. It ranked 11th in the nation in terms of quality of scientific research leading towards a Nobel Prize. UCLA is a Public Ivy. UCLA is also one of the 25 New Ivies, a list of universities ranked by Kaplan.
CIGNA Corporation is a Philadelphia-based insurance company, the oldest stock insurance company in the United States. The Philadelphia headquarters are located in Two Liberty Place.
CIGNA can trace its roots back to 1792, and the founding of the Insurance Company of North America (INA), the country's first marine insurer. Its first life insurance policy was issued two years later. In 1865, the Connecticut General Life Insurance Company (CG) was formed in Hartford. Nearly 120 years later, in 1982, CG and INA merged to form CIGNA. In 1993 CIGNA introduced its Tree of Life brand identity.
In 1997, CIGNA sold several of its staff model healthplans and the original Ross-Loos Medical Group which is the oldest health maintenance organization "HMO" in the United States to Birmingham, Alabama based MedPartners. In 1998, CIGNA sold its individual life insurance business to Lincoln National Corporation, and the next year it sold its property and casualty insurance business to the ACE Limited, for $3.5B cash. In 2000, it sold its reinsurance business to Swiss Re. In 2004, it sold its pension business to Prudential Financial.