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Blue Cross Of California

BUSINESS
October 10, 2002 | DON LEE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Blue Cross of California, one of the nation's largest health insurers, this fall will begin keeping a quality scorecard on thousands of physicians and pay bonuses to those who meet high standards of care. The incentive program, to be announced today, is part of a growing movement nationally to hold health providers more accountable for the quality as well as the cost of care. In recent years, almost all of the quality focus has been on HMOs.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 30, 2002 | From a Times Staff Writer
Blue Cross of California and its parent company, Wellpoint Health Networks Inc., have agreed to pay $9.25 million to resolve a whistle-blower lawsuit accusing Blue Cross of defrauding the Medicare system, the U.S.Justice Department said Monday. The alleged abuses occurred during the 1990s while Blue Cross was operating under contract with the federal government to process and audit Medicare claims in the state.
BUSINESS
May 23, 2002 | DON LEE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Under pressure from hospitals, Blue Cross of California has backed off selling "tiered hospital" policies, which group hospitals by cost and increase co-payments for consumers who use the costlier facilities. Senior executives at Blue Cross, the state's largest health insurer, said the company changed course after encountering vigorous opposition from hospitals.
BUSINESS
March 9, 2002 | DENISE GELLENE and RONALD D. WHITE, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
The multibillion-dollar business of prescription allergy drugs took a sharp turn Friday as WellPoint Health Networks Inc. said it plans to steer allergy patients from prescription medications to over-the-counter versions of Claritin. The announcement came as Schering-Plough Corp. disclosed plans to market Claritin as a nonprescription drug when its patent expires in December.
NEWS
July 10, 2001 | DENISE GELLENE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Blue Cross of California, in a radical departure from industry practice, is scrapping an incentive program in its HMO that rewards doctors for controlling medical costs. The insurer instead will link bonus payments directly to patient satisfaction--a stunning indication that the industry's oft-criticized focus on cost containment no longer works. Blue Cross, a unit of WellPoint Health Networks Inc. of Thousand Oaks, will announce the changes today.
BUSINESS
February 21, 2001 | A Times Staff Writer
The huge Sutter Health network in Northern California and Blue Cross of California said they agreed to a new contract that will allow Blue Cross members to continue to have access to Sutter's doctors and hospitals. Sacramento-based Sutter, which operates 26 hospitals and six doctor groups, had let its Blue Cross contract expire on Dec. 31. Sutter wanted Blue Cross to increase the fees it pays the provider for hospital stays and to change rules for analyzing claims.
BUSINESS
February 15, 2001 | JERRY HIRSCH, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Blue Cross of California said Wednesday that it settled a lawsuit from one of California's largest hospital chains that had contended that the big insurer routinely declined to pay for patient services as a way to boost profitability. Separately, the Woodland Hills-based health plan said it reached a new contract with St. John's Health Center in Santa Monica. The 233-bed hospital stopped accepting Blue Cross insurance in August, protesting the insurer's payment rates.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 6, 2001 | GEORGE RAMOS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The chief executive of L.A. Care Health Plan, the nation's largest public managed care program, has been placed on a leave of absence because of concerns that he has a conflict of interest, officials said Monday. Anthony Rodgers, 52, was placed on leave from his $242,000-a-year post last Friday when the board met to discuss concerns that Rodgers had recently married a staff member of Blue Cross, one of the health plans participating in L.A. Care, without properly notifying the board, L.A.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 28, 2000 | BARBARA MURPHY
Blue Cross of California, an operating subsidiary of WellPoint Health Networks Inc. in Thousand Oaks, has been honored by California Medical Review Inc. for successfully implementing measures that improve the quality of health care. CMRI, the Medicare health care quality improvement organization for California, annually recognizes hospitals, health plans and medical groups in the state. Blue Cross of California, with 5.
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