June 17, 1999 |
A state investigation of a leading HMO found no proof the company improperly removed drugs from its formulary, but similar probes of five other insurers continue, officials said. The state Department of Corporations notified Oakland-based Kaiser Foundation Health Plan that the "information reviewed, including the large amount of information provided by the plan [Kaiser], does not support the allegations," the department said this week.
December 29, 1998 |
The state Department of Corporations said it has closed its investigation of Kaiser Foundation Health Plan's policies regarding the anti-impotence pill Viagra after finding that the HMO earlier this year "may have encouraged" its doctors not to prescribe the drug because of cost considerations. In April, Kaiser, the nation's largest nonprofit HMO, announced that, with rare exceptions, it would not cover the cost of the expensive treatment for sexual dysfunction.
January 26, 1997
Re "HMO Trend Demands Eagle-Eyed State Oversight," by Jamie Court, Commentary, Jan. 15: The Kaiser Foundation Health Plan is indeed a nonprofit organization, and the "profits" Court discusses so glibly are plowed right back into the health plan to benefit the members through new technology, upgraded facilities and expanded services. According to the California Medical Assn.'s analysis of various public financial filings, Kaiser Foundation Health Plan spends 96.8% of every dollar on actual medical care--more than any other California health plan.
July 23, 1996 |
If medical care can be rated like automobiles, then the Kaiser Foundation Health Plan might be considered the Lexus of California health plans, at least according to a survey of HMO member satisfaction conducted by Consumer Reports magazine.
December 22, 1995 |
In what is believed to be the first effort of its kind, the giant Kaiser Foundation Health Plan is seeking to pay bonuses to nurses who help move patients out of hospitals faster and cut other medical costs. Critics of such incentives--widely offered to doctors--say they create a conflict of interest by encouraging medical providers to skimp on care so they can make more money. Because they are paid less than doctors, nurses may be particularly vulnerable to such conflicts, critics add.
November 3, 1995 |
In what could be its first major review in 20 years of binding arbitration clauses in health plan contracts, the California Supreme Court agreed Thursday to consider a case in which the giant Kaiser Foundation Health Plan is accused of stalling an arbitration hearing until after the claimant died. The move may have saved Kaiser as much as $250,000 in damages. At issue in the case is Kaiser's mandatory arbitration clause, which forces its more than 4.
August 30, 1995 |
The family of Wilfredo Engalla says Kaiser medicine doomed him to death from inoperable lung cancer. Then, they say, "Kaiser justice" made matters worse. That's what Engalla's widow and four children allege happened when they tried to press a malpractice claim against Kaiser Foundation Health Plan, the nation's largest health maintenance organization.
May 16, 1995 |
In a case that underscores the shrinking options available to patients with complaints about their medical care, the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday refused to allow a California woman to sue her HMO in state court over allegations that it contributed to her son's 1991 death by denying experimental treatment for his cancer. The court declined without comment to overturn federal district court and court of appeals rulings against the mother, Billie J. Comer of Pleasanton.