Blue Cross NC CEO must resign, says state insurance commissioner

Blue Cross NC CEO to resign - person in handcuffs
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The regulator blames the chief exec for waiting three months to notify him of June 22 arrest.

North Carolina Insurance Commissioner Mike Causey has called for the Blue Cross NC CEO to resign. Causey cited the failure of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina’s chief executive officer to inform Causey that the CEO had been arrested on June 22.

The CEO was allegedly arrested on June 22 for a traffic accident related to alcohol use.

Causey also said the Blue Cross NC board was at fault for also waiting for three months to let him know that CEO Patrick Conway was arrested. Dr. Conway, 45 years old, was allegedly pulled over after swerving out of his lane on an interstate highway and colliding with a truck. He faces charges for driving while impaired as well as related misdemeanor child abuse. The latter charge has to do with the fact that Conway’s two young daughters were in the vehicle at the time of this incident, according to a police report cited by the Wall Street Journal.

At a recent news conference, Insurance Commissioner Causey called for Dr. Conway’s immediate resignation or for the board to fire him if he does not. He said this was the only way for a workable relationship to be maintained between the regulator and the major insurer within the state. He called the delay in disclosing the details of the arrest a “cover up.”

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The Insurance Commissioner said that this incident has damaged the reputation of Blue Cross NC.

“It pains me greatly because this tragic incident has put a big dent in the reputation of a good company,” said Causey. “But there is no path forward” with Dr. Conway at the head of the insurer.

Dr. Conway and Thomas Walker, the CEO’s attorney, were not available for immediate response upon request for comment. Equally, a Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina spokesperson was also not available for immediate comment.

Blue Cross NC has previously stated that it has made efforts to manage “this sensitive matter in a manner consistent with the privacy and legal issues at stake, as well as the Board’s fiduciary obligations.” Conway has also stated via Blue Cross NC CEO to resign - person in handcuffsWalker that he was embarrassed and ashamed about the incident. He said he promptly disclosed the episode to the board of the insurer and that he has since completed treatment for substance abuse.

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