HASLET, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – An insurance company is now covering a young boy’s anesthesia charges after The Ones for Justice got involved.
Bianca Callahan of Haslet was told her son, Cade, needed immediate oral surgery.
Doctors said this procedure would have been painful for an adult — let alone a 7-year-old boy.
By the looks of it, you’d never know Cade Callahan just had surgery.
“My son had to have mouth surgery because he had extra teeth,” said Bianca Callahan.
The surgeon removed a tooth inside Cade’s gums in addition to two other baby teeth that had fused together.
The Callahans expected a medical bill for the procedure. They did not expect a $528 charge to cover the anesthesia.
“To have a cost like this, it’s outrageous,” Callahan said.
Cigna, their insurance provider, refused to cover the charge, claiming anesthesia was unnecessary.
The Callahans disagreed, especially considering Cade is 7.
“For them to think that he could handle the shots, and the surgery, and the stitches, it’s insane,” Callahan said. “We were having to hold his hands down and he was screaming, ‘No, no, no, no,’ for just the first shot.”
Callahan spent hours on the phone with Cigna. She said she was told when it comes to baby teeth, anesthesia should not be used for kids over the age of three.
The Callahans doubt whether an adult could have endured the pain.
“There’s no way I could do that without anesthesia,” said Evan Callahan, Cade’s father.
Even their surgeon agreed.
The oral surgeon’s office appealed the denial, writing, “This procedure was invasive and painful for an adult, let alone a young child. Please reconsider.”
“What does it say that he is a professional and he’s appealed this twice?” asked reporter Alanna Autler. “That Cigna is in the wrong,” Callahan said.
The Callahans are a single-income family, relying on the salary Evan makes as a police officer.
So between supporting three children, $528 is a lot to pay.
But Bianca Callahan said this is about the principle.
“At this point it’s not just about the money for me. It’s about that they think children should have to be tortured whenever they’re going to get a procedure done,” Callahan said. “Imagine your child sitting there and getting that done.”
One day after The Ones for Justice called Cigna, the company said it would cover the claim.
“We work very hard to make access to health and dental care easier for our customers, and we strive to provide the best possible experience,” wrote Cigna spokeswoman Karen Eldred. “We are pleased that the matter has now been resolved, and the claim is being paid.”