In what looks like an ongoing crisis for the company, WellPoint is in news again, this time for CEO Angela Braly's May 8 letter to President Barack Obama and this week's tumultuous shareholder meeting.
The health insurer is publicly fighting back against a Reuters report that it rescinded the health plans of women with breast cancer, although the newswire is standing by its story. Braly sent a letter to Obama this month refuting the story.
In the past few weeks, Braly has met with employees and investors to talk about the company's reputation and its relationship with the Obama administration, including at this week's shareholder meeting.
The New York Times writes:
But it is WellPoint, one of the companies that may have the most to lose under the new health care law, that seems unwilling — or unable — to avoid controversies that make it an easy target in Washington. In the last weeks of the debate over health care legislation, for example, WellPoint became the focus of lawmakers' indignation over its decision to raise premiums in California as much as 39 percent.
Hauled before Congress in February to justify the decision, Ms. Braly refused to back down, although the uproar over the proposed increases might have helped hasten the legislation's passage.