Monday, May 25, 2009

Doctor Pushes Back Against Insurer Scrutiny

Monterey physician Bradley Carpentier found himself spending so much time fighting with health insurers to get approvals for the treatments he prescribed for his patients that he decided to wage his own lobbying effort.

Carpentier formed a new political action committee - Stop Practicing Medicine - to target the long-standing practice of insurers hiring doctors to review physician decisions, even though the insurer-hired doctors had never seen or talked to the patient whose care they were scrutinizing.

Insurers defend the practice, saying such doctors often serve as a second set of eyes to ensure patients are receiving the most appropriate and effective treatments. But Carpentier, along with patients and other doctors who support his position, says insurers are denying and delaying care.

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