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Addiction

Health Net became the favored insurer of drug abuse patients in California. Then it stopped paying their bills.

Health Net became the favored insurer of drug abuse patients in California. Then it stopped paying their bills.

In 2014, Gary Millman signed up his 28-year-old son James for health coverage with Health Net for a very specific reason. James had been battling drug addiction for close to a decade, and the Woodland Hills insurer offered the best coverage in California for substance abuse treatment.

Millman, a semi-retired business executive living in Santa Rosa, was happy with the coverage, even as the premium for James’ policy alone rose to more than $700 a month. But in early 2016, something suddenly changed. James needed another round of treatment, but of the addiction treatment centers Millman contacted, all of which were outside the insurer’s network, none would take him as a...

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