Physician Group Criticized Over Exclusivity Deals
Representatives from San Francisco's largest physician group, Brown & Toland Medical Group, are asking doctors in the Chinese Community Health Care Association to sign exclusive contracts that would provide financial incentives and administrative services but require them to resign from other physicians' groups, New America Media reports.
San Francisco Board of Supervisors President Aaron Peskin on April 4 submitted a resolution condemning the practice and said he is "committed to making Brown & Toland cease and desist their predatory practices."
CCHCA comprises about 160 bilingual physicians who work at Chinese and other hospitals in San Francisco. About 20,000 of the association's 27,000 patients are insured through the Chinese Community Health Plan or the San Francisco Health Plan for Medi-Cal beneficiaries and the uninsured. Brown & Toland doctors do not accept either plan.
Shu-Wing Chan, a member on the Board of Trustees of CCHCA, said that if CCHA doctors enter into the "preferred provider" agreement with Brown & Toland, it "means that patients who are monolingual or new immigrants who are economically disadvantaged will have a harder time seeing a culturally sensitive doctor who can communicate with them" in their native language (Chien, New America Media, 4/6).