Caitlin and Corey Gaffer got a surprise letter from their insurance company — saying they were being dumped for non-payment. Except, as far as they knew, they were paid up.
As it turned out, they’d made a couple of small mistakes, which they were eager to fix. But their insurer was definitely not interested. Caitlin and Corey spent fruitless weeks on the phone.
And then, Caitlin’s pregnancy — more than six months along — ran into complications.
They scrambled for months to get covered, while racking up about $30,000 in hospital bills.
There’s a happy ending. Two, in fact.
First, their baby was born healthy (and insured) in January. She’s in the episode too, and she’s adorable.
Maggie, Corey, and Caitlin Gaffer, with Luna the dog. (Photo by Lauren Cutshall.)
Second: In March their old insurer offered an apology — and offered to reinstate them. (This was the day after a reporter called to ask the insurer for their side of the story.)
… but the whole journey was harrowing, and opens up questions about what kinds of safeguards consumers have — or should have — against getting dropped.
Welcome to Season Two!
This story — like a lot of this season — came straight from my inbox. A few days after the show launched, I got an email with the subject line “Pregnant woman and her husband in Minnesota need help.”
We’ve got new friends!
We’ve got co-producers for Season Two, Kaiser Health News. Three things to know:
First: Kaiser Health News is not affiliated with the giant health care provider Kaiser Permanente. They share an ancestor — which is a fun story I’ve written all about here.
Second: They ARE a great non-profit newsroom covering health care in America, an editorially independent project of the Kaiser Family Foundation. (There’s that name again. And again, here’s the story.)
Third: Their editor-in-chief is one of the people who inspired this show.
YEP. The whole story is worth reading. I am so pleased and proud to be working with these folks.
Catch you next time. Till then, how about…