Navigation Links
Wal-Mart's 2009 Health Care Plan Includes 'Debbie Shank Exception'
Date:12/10/2008

Wal-Mart Watch and Jim Shank attribute the change to public outrage against Wal-Mart's treatment of Debbie Shank

WASHINGTON, Dec. 10 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Wal-Mart Watch claimed a victory for Wal-Mart workers today with Wal-Mart's addition of a subrogation exception to the company's 2009 health care plan for cases similar to that of former Missouri Wal-Mart employee Debbie Shank.

Wal-Mart Watch confirmed that Wal-Mart's 2009 health care plan exempts the company's right to subrogate against a covered person completely in cases of 1) paraplegia or quadriplegia; 2) severe burns; 3) total and permanent physical or mental disability; or 4) death. In all other cases, the plan also limits the right to recover to 50% (from 100% previously) of a settlement plus attorney's fees.

Many company health care plans include the legal right to subrogate or reclaim medical expenses paid by a health care plan if the patient wins money in a legal settlement. The right is rarely if ever exercised by companies in tragic cases such as Debbie Shank's.

The policy change may prevent Wal-Mart from putting another family through the agony it caused the Shanks. Ultimately, the decision to pursue subrogation still remains with Wal-Mart's health care plan administrative committee, but Wal-Mart may choose to apply the exceptions liberally rather than risk the kind of public relations debacle it incurred by going after Debbie Shank.

"Knowing what Debbie and our family experienced with Wal-Mart's attempts to take away Debbie's financial security for her ongoing medical care on top of a very real, life-changing tragedy, I am grateful that the focus on our situation will spare other families the same type of suffering," said Jim Shank. "I wish it wouldn't have taken national outrage to push Wal-Mart to do the right thing, but I'm glad that the company listened to everyone who spoke up on our behalf."

Debbie was covered under the Wal-Mart health care plan in 2000 when she was permanently injured and brain-damaged in a car accident. Three years after the Shanks won a settlement from the trucking company responsible for the accident, Wal-Mart sued them for $470,000 - more than the remaining amount in Debbie's trust for her long-term health care - to reimburse itself for the money it spent on her health care, as well as interest and the company's own attorneys' fees.

After significant public outrage and weeks of negative media, Wal-Mart reversed its decision on April 1, 2008, and allowed Debbie to keep her money. Wal-Mart subsequently sent a letter to Jim Shank, stating its intention to change its subrogation policy as a result of Debbie's situation.

"We applaud Wal-Mart for making this positive change to its subrogation policy," said Wal-Mart Watch Executive Director David Nassar. "While we believe Wal-Mart could have done the right thing much sooner, we are very pleased with the end result. Wal-Mart still has a long way to go to improve the quality and affordability of its employee health care plans, but this is a specific step in the right direction and a victory for Wal-Mart workers."

To review Wal-Mart's amended 2009 subrogation policy, visit:

http://action.walmartwatch.com/page/-/2009%20Policy.JPG

The original 2008 subrogation policy can be found here:

http://action.walmartwatch.com/page/-/2008%20Benefits%20Book.JPG

Wal-Mart Watch, a non-profit group based in Washington, DC, was founded in December 2004. Its mission is to reform Wal-Mart's business practices and help improve Wal-Mart as a neighbor, employer, and corporate citizen. Learn more at http://www.walmartwatch.com.


'/>"/>
SOURCE Wal-Mart Watch
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Penn study finds pro-death proteins required to regulate healthy immune function
2. UCLA researchers identify markers that may predict diabetes in still-healthy people
3. Air pollution linked to cardiovascular risk indices in healthy young adults
4. More proof needed of safety and quality of electronic personal health records
5. Health care incentive model offers collaborative approach
6. Loneliness is bad for your health
7. Mailman School of Public Health study examines link between racial discrimination and substance use
8. Green Tea May Brew Up Healthier Skin
9. For Health Info, Women Often Turn to the Web
10. Record Number of Americans Lack Health Insurance
11. U.S. Research Funding Continues to Flatten as U.S. Health Costs Climb - in August 31 Science
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/27/2016)... , ... May 27, 2016 , ... W.S. Badger ... announced today that it has been recognized as one of the best small businesses ... was named as one of nine small businesses providing progressive benefits to new parents ...
(Date:5/27/2016)... NY (PRWEB) , ... May 27, 2016 , ... ... with Mediaplanet to help educate the many who are unaware of the plight ... to aphasia will run within the “Stroke Awareness” campaign. , The link between ...
(Date:5/27/2016)... ... May 27, 2016 , ... ... in the pharmaceutical, medical and food industries. Aside from its GMP accreditation, Validation ... providing proof of successfully certified products, services and staff. , Validation Center is ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... May 26, 2016 , ... Intalere, ... members and suppliers for its inaugural Member Conference at the Paris Hotel in ... elevating the operational health of America’s healthcare providers. , The conference was highlighted ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... May 26, 2016 , ... Cardiac arrhythmia ... negative impact on long-term patient survival, reports a team of UPMC researchers in ... week in the Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, provide critical information that ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/25/2016)... May 25, 2016 According to ... Type (3D, 2D, 4D), by Therapeutic Area (Oncology, Cosmeceutical/Plastic ... User (Medical Device Manufacturers, Hospitals/ Clinics) - Forecast to ... Medical Animation Market for the forecast period of 2016 ... 301.3 Million by 2021 from USD 117.3 Million in ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... 25, 2016 According to market ... Growth and Demand Forecast to 2022 - Industry Insights ... Others)" published by P&S Market Research, the global insulin ... 2015, and it is expected to grow at a ... insulin pump segment is expected to witness the fastest ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... England , May 25, 2016 ... company employing the precision of circulating tumour DNA ... today announces the appointment of Professor Clive ... provide medical leadership across the clinical development programme, ... Inivata,s products help deliver significant improvements in clinical ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: