NU Online News Service, Aug. 1, 2:04 p.m. – U.S. District Judge James Jones of the U.S. District Court in Abingdon, Va., is allowing chiropractors to proceed with a suit against Trigon Healthcare Inc., Richmond, Va., a managed care company.
The American Chiropractic Association, Arlington, Va., and the Virginia Chiropractic Association, have teamed up with patients and individual chiropractors to sue Trigon over restrictions on coverage for chiropractic care, such as a $500 cap on coverage for chiropractic spinal manipulation.
The plaintiffs say Trigon, which holds the Blue Cross and Blue Shield licenses for Virginia, and other Blues plans are violating federal racketeering laws and other state and federal laws by conspiring to restrict chiropractic coverage.
Trigon filed a motion asking the judge to dismiss the claims.
The judge has dismissed the racketeering claims, but he is letting the plaintiffs go forward with many of the other allegations.
“At this stage of the case, the Court was required to accept as true the plaintiff’s factual allegations,” Trigon said in a statement commenting on the ruling. “Trigon, however, strongly disputes the chiropractors’ factual claims and will address those issues as the case moves forward.”
But William Shields, a Richmond, Va., who represents the Virginia chiropractors group, emphasized that the judge left six of the original eight counts in the complaint intact.
“We’re very pleased with the ruling,” Shields said.