ER Doctors Mock Cigna Ad Starring Patrick Dempsey & More TV Docs (VIDEOS)

Patrick Dempsey

ER Doctors Mock Cigna Ad Starring Patrick Dempsey & More TV Docs (VIDEOS)


Grey's Anatomy alum Patrick Dempsey joined other TV docs for a Cigna PSA recently, and now an association of ER doctors has mocked that ad with their own parody version.

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You’d think the Cigna ad is a well-meaning one — people gotta get their physicals, right? — but wait ‘til you hear what the real docs say in their response.

Let’s just say, the shade is real.

In the original Cigna ad, Patrick shares the screen with other “TV doctors of America” — M*A*S*H’s Alan Alda, Scrubs’ Donald Faison, ER’s Noah Wyle, and House’s Lisa Edelstein.

These five actors riff on how they have zero medical knowledge: Alan doesn’t know what he’s doing in the OR, Patrick says he never went to college, and Donald freaks at the sight of blood.

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But they can do one thing, they explain: encouraging viewers to visit actual doctors for annual check-ups.

In the parody response from the American College of Emergency Physicians, it’s very obvious the docs on screen are not actors… and the production values are not Hollywood-level. But the message is an important one.

“Now, thanks to the insurance industry, emergency care is covered less and less, and patients are paying more and more,” one physician says in the video.

“We are poking fun at Cigna to highlight a serious issue: the lack of fair coverage for value in emergency medical care,” ACEP President Rebecca Parker, MD, FACEP told Forbes.

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“Many people don’t realize how little insurance coverage they have until they visit the ER, and then they are shocked at how little their insurance company pays.”

“The $9 million Cigna spent on an ad starring well-loved actors playing physicians would have been better spent on patients,” she continued.

“Emergency physicians fight hard for their patients, who are bearing an increasingly large share of the burden for their medical care.

“We encourage all patients to investigate what their health insurance policy covers and demand fair and reasonable coverage for emergency care.

“Emergency physicians are there for their patients 24 hours a day, every day of the year.  We can’t say the same for the insurance industry.”

We wonder how many of these TV docs would have agreed to appear in Cigna’s ad had they heard these docs’ argument first!