Los Angeles Times, April 11, 2013
In a rare case, a Los Angeles jury awarded $3.8 million in compensatory damages to a Porter Ranch doctor who contended insurance giant Anthem Blue Cross retaliated against him for being a strong patient advocate. The jury ruled late Monday in favor of Jeffrey Nordella, 58, an urgent-care and family-practice doctor who alleged that Anthem barred him from its network in 2010, when he applied to be a preferred provider. The damages could climb higher Friday, when the 12-person panel reconvenes and considers punitive damages against Anthem, a unit of insurance giant WellPoint Inc. The jury found that Anthem, the state's largest for-profit health insurer, violated Nordella's right to "fair procedure," and the company did so with "malice, oppression or fraud."