A video of a woman vomiting in the parking lot of an Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield office in Los Angeles has gone viral across social media after the payer denied her coverage of treatment for a stomach condition.
Comedian Sandy Honig posted the video to Twitter on Aug. 29, where it has already received over 858,000 views. In the video, she discusses her condition, gastroparesis, which paralyzes parts of the stomach and makes digestion difficult. She said the condition causes her to vomit nearly everything she eats.
Ms. Honig said she sought treatment through Botox injection into the pyloric sphincter, a muscle that connects the stomach to the small intestine. She said Anthem BCBS denied coverage for the treatment, so she decided to film the video to appeal the decision.
The video shows Ms. Honig vomiting several times in the Anthem parking lot on Burbank Boulevard in the Woodland Hills neighborhood.
"Nobody would take my letter, but they said I could mail it with any relevant documentation," she said. She then vomits into the empty envelope.
On Twitter, Anthem responded to the video and asked for Ms. Honig's email so the company could "look into this."
Shortly after, Ms. Honig tweeted that an individual from Anthem called her and said they "feel awful" and are "looking into it." She concluded by saying, "vomit at ur insurance companies folks!"
In another tweet on Aug. 29, Ms. Honig said Anthem called a second time to explain why the Botox injection was not a medically necessary procedure.
"I guess now is the time for me to admit it IS cosmetic," Ms. Honig tweeted. "I just turned 30 and want the inside of my stomach to look younger."
"Our clinical team has carefully reviewed her case and our medical policies, and the existing medical evidence does not support the treatment she is requesting for her condition," an Anthem spokesperson told BuzzFeed News.