Rocky Mountain Health changes policy to include couple’s overweight baby

A dust-up over a local health insurance company initially refusing to insure a heavy infant has been resolved.

Kelli Lange recently appeared on KKCO-TV for a story about how Rocky Mountain Health Plans denied coverage to her 4-month-old, Alex, because the child is considered obese and weighs in the 99th percentile for his height and weight.

After the story aired and other media outlets picked up the news, Rocky Mountain Health Plans said Monday that it will insure healthy babies regardless of weight.

Insurance companies can deny coverage for individuals with pre-existing conditions, but those under group policies cannot be denied for pre-existing conditions.

“You look at someone in the 99-percentile and that is appropriate for someone my age, but the problem is it’s not appropriate for an infant,” said President Steve ErkenBrack of Rocky Mountain Health Plans.

The company changed its policy after being made aware of the loophole, ErkenBrack said.

No other healthy, heavy babies have been denied coverage, spokeswoman Kayla Arnesen said.

Parents seeking health care coverage for their children is a fairly new process for the company, Arnesen said.

Typically, adults insure their families through employers. That model is shrinking as employers are dropping or limiting health care coverage or as people lose jobs.

“This is not just about changing it for Alex,” ErkenBrack said. “It sheds light on a situation that had not come up before.”


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