KTVI: Contact 2 questions insurance company’s ruling on emergency medical flight for pregnant woman

By Mike Colombo

Jeannie Radford cherishes every moment with her two-year-old daughter, Josie. Jeannie doesn’t take Josie’s smiles and laughs for granted, given the way she entered the world.

On July 15, 2014, Jeannie was rushed to a Sullivan, Missouri hospital; one that was unequipped to care for a premature baby. Once stable, doctors ordered that Jeannie be airlifted more than 60 miles to Barnes Jewish Hospital in St. Louis.

Radford was denied a home loan due to a major ding to her credit report. The lender informed her she was in collections, owing more than $50,000 for the emergency helicopter ride.

Radford said it was the first time she’d heard anything about the bill. When she contacted her insurance company, Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, she said a representative told her the company was not paying the bill because it determined it wasn’t medically necessary for her to be airlifted.

If Jeannie Radford’s case isn’t medically necessary, what is? Contact 2 asked Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield that very question. The company told us it wouldn’t comment on pending litigation.