KPC: CMA Urges State, Insurers to Help Cash-Strapped Medical Group
The California Medical Association yesterday urged Cigna and Blue Shield of California to reconsider their decision to withdraw patients from the financially ailing KPC Medical Management and blamed state regulators for "look[ing] the other way while HMO companies reimbursed KPC at rates too low to cover the costs of medical care," the Orange County Register reports. Contending that KPC's failure could cause "chaos," CMA President Marie Kuffner said the state should intervene and force HMOs to increase reimbursement levels. "We believe there is a ... dereliction of responsibility at the level of the state," Kuffner said. Daniel Zingale, director of the newly created Department of Managed Care, would not comment on the agency's authority to force HMOs to make higher payments, but said he had sent Cigna guidelines that must be met to "ensure continuity of care for the patients who are being switched" to other doctors' groups. Cigna declined to say whether it would reverse its decision, while Blue Shield maintained that it will move forward with its plan to withdraw patients from KPC (Wolfson, 7/21).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.