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Group sues to force insurers to take AIDS money

– An advocacy group has filed a federal lawsuit seeking to force insurance companies in Louisiana to take payments from a federal program that helps HIV and AIDS patients.

Lambda Legal filed the suit in a Baton Rouge federal court Thursday saying at least one insurance company is violating the Affordable Care Act by refusing to take premium payments from the federal Ryan White HIV/AIDS program.

Lambda Legal earlier filed complaints with federal agencies after Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana said it would stop taking payments March 1 from unrelated third parties such as the White program.

The Louisiana Health Cooperative said it also would stop taking such payments and a third company, Vantage Health Plan, says it’s considering doing so.

Spokesman John Maginnis says Blue Cross/Blue Shield has not seen the lawsuit.

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