Advocacy group’s game takes HMO whacking to new level;

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Who was that caped RN? It’s Nurse Avenger!

Modern Healthcare

And you thought “Grand Theft Auto” was violent.

Putting a healthcare spin on the vastly popular “shooter” video game, a California-based consumer advocacy group has launched an online game called “Nurse Avenger,” in which players win points for wasting greedy insurance executives in the name of universal healthcare.

Assuming the character of a caped nurse crusader, players face off against mobsterlike HMO bosses who are bent on killing a patient in a hospital bed. In place of shotguns and samurai swords are special weapons that include the Waste Whacker, the Salary Sucker, the Denial Destructor and a Purchasing Power Mega Weapon. To unleash a special blitz attack, players can click on a Nurse Avenger icon when it pops up on the screen.

To advance to the next round, players must obliterate the Blue Cross Mega Boss, a less-than-subtle allusion to Blue Cross of California, a unit of national giant WellPoint and the state’s “big bully on the block,” says Jerry Flanagan, an advocate with the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights.

The foundation unveiled the game Aug. 28 in a tongue-in-cheek show of support for Senate Bill 840, a universal healthcare bill, which narrowly passed the California Assembly later that day.

“We’ve taken the fight for reform to the video game generation to recruit more universal healthcare warriors,” says Flanagan, adding that more 20-somethings are being priced out of the health insurance market. “Like our game, SB 840 ‘eliminates’ the middleman.”

The game can be played at

Consumer Watchdog
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