nurses and hospital administrators an opportunity to voice their opinions
on HMOs and the future of HMO health care.
The meeting was sponsored by Assemblyman Dario Frommer (D-Glendale).
Frommer sits on three committees that deal with health-related issues:
health, insurance, and aging and long-term care.
"I'm interested to know from people on the front lines what their
experience is and what ideas and suggestions they have for making the
system work better," Frommer said Friday.
In 1999, California became one of the first states to pass HMO reform
legislation, and then formed the Department of Managed Health Care to
oversee the quality of managed care.
"We're being asked to vote on a lot of very complicated legislation,"
Frommer said. "I wanted to put the group together to act as a sounding
board for me on health care issues."
After updating the department's progress, Daniel Zingale, director of
the state's managed health care agency, explained HMO reform legislation
that allows a patient to appeal an HMO's decision to deny care.
After reviewing the HMO's decision, a panel of independent doctors can
uphold that decision or order treatment.
Physicians in attendance voiced concerns about being paid on time by
HMOs for services they provide, Frommer said.
"I thought it was positive, I thought there were some good points
made," he said. "I'm always looking for ways that we can work with
regulators to make the system work more efficiently for consumers."