PROVIDENCE— Lt. Gov. Elizabeth Roberts issued the following statement today regarding last week’s announcement by U.S. Attorney Robert Clark Corrente of his agreement with Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island and the ensuing $20 million fine.
“The hidden costs of corruption have come to the surface again. A fine of $20 million –coming from premiums paid by families and small businesses—funds that should be used to strengthen our network of doctors, nurses and community hospitals—will be spent to settle an egregious violation of the public's trust and of the law. For Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island to move forward, those five board members, who began serving prior to May 2003 and were therefore responsible for oversight when the illegal actions took place, must step down, including the chairman, Mr. Montanaro. Fundamental change must occur and the only way to ensure complete accountability and a fresh start is for these members of the board to resign.
“As I work diligently with many committed Rhode Islanders to move toward a high quality health care system that we can all afford, Blue Cross and its board must work for the common good, put public interest first, and restore the public trust.”