BCBS accused of swindling Somali-American medical transportation firms

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Somali-American medical transportation firms in Minnesota allege Blue Cross Blue Shield hired drivers, gained Medicaid members from Somali communities and subsequently let the drivers go, the Star Tribune reports.

Nearly 60 medical transportation companies owned by Somali-Americans accused the insurer of "bait and switch" tactics at a Saturday news conference in Minneapolis. The accusers said BCBS offered positions to the drivers in October and fired about 58 firms in August after the drivers told friends and family to switch Medicaid plans from UCare to BCBS' Blue Plus program.

The drivers said no Somali-Americans will maintain coverage through BCBS come October when individuals can switch plans, according to the report.

A BCBS spokesperson said the drivers were fired due to rising costs and a limitation of the number of transportation firms the insurer will use to drive immigrant Medicaid patients to appointments. 

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