California health insurers fined nearly $5M for improper payments

California’s seven largest health insurers face $4.85 million in fines for improper and late claim payments, according to The Associated Press.

On average, the insurers paid about 80 percent of claims correctly, well below the 95 percent required by state law, the California Department of Managed Health Care said Monday.

The following fines were issued:
• Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of California: $900,000
• United/Pacificare: $800,000
• HealthNet: $750,000
• Kaiser Foundation Health Plan: $750,000
• Cigna: $450,000
• Aenta: $300,000

The insurers also have to pay restitution to hospitals and health providers, which may cost tens of millions of dollars, the department said.

The California Association of Health Plans is preparing a response on behalf of insurers, a spokeswoman told the AP.