Rules on Time Limits for California HMOs To Provide Care Rejected
On Wednesday, the Office of Administrative Law rejected a set of regulations by the Department of Managed Health Care that would have allowed HMOs to define for themselves what constituted timely access to care, the Los Angeles Times reports (Los Angeles Times, 2/28).
The regulations are needed to enact a 2002 law that gave DMHC greater oversight over HMO quality-of-care issues.
Earlier versions of the rules detailed specific enforceable time limits for HMOs to provide health care services to members, according to Anthony Wright, executive director of Health Access, an advocacy group (George, Los Angeles Daily Journal, 2/28).
OAL, which reviews proposed state rules for the governor, said it rejected the regulations on technical grounds, explaining that the public did not have enough time to comment on the suggested rules (Los Angeles Times, 2/28).
Braulio Montesino, chief of legal services for DMHC, said that agency staff "will work to ensure that the requirements of the legislation are met to satisfy access concerns without unduly increasing health insurance premiums" (Los Angeles Daily Journal, 2/28).