New Governance Board for Arbitration System at Kaiser Permanente

Apr 13, 2001, 01:00 ET from Kaiser Permanente

    OAKLAND, Calif., April 13 /PRNewswire/ -- A reorganized and strengthened
 governance structure now oversees the independent administration of the
 arbitration system at Kaiser Permanente.  With new members who bring increased
 consumer representation the new Arbitration Oversight Board will be chaired by
 David Werdegar, MD, MPH, professor of community medicine, emeritus, UCSF
 School of Medicine.
     "It is an honor to be the chair of this distinguished board.  It serves a
 vital function," said Dr. Werdegar.  "The board represents the California
 spectrum of perspectives and communities which should make it particularly
 effective in representing the needs of Kaiser Permanente members. We have set
 our sights on making this a model arbitration system and we are eager to get
 to work on achieving that goal."
     The board's mission is to ensure a speedy, cost-effective, and fair
 arbitration process that protects the privacy of the participants. The
 revamped board will set policy for and oversee the independent administration
 of Kaiser Permanente's arbitration system. In addition, the board will
 periodically review and evaluate the experience of those using the arbitration
 system and revise the system rules as necessary. Kaiser Permanente members and
 other interested parties will be regularly informed of the board's efforts to
 ensure a fair arbitration process.  The Independent Administrator's Office
 will report to the Oversight Board.
     Responding to the California Supreme Court's criticism of the health
 plan's self-administered system in the 1997 decision, Engalla v. Permanente
 Medical Group, Kaiser Permanente convened a Blue Ribbon Advisory Panel to
 evaluate its arbitration process and recommend improvements. The panel
 recommended that Kaiser Permanente turn over administration of its arbitration
 system to an independent firm and create a consumer advisory group to oversee
 the work. The advisory group that was initially created was mainly advisory.
 With the restructuring of the panel it now will have a representative panel
 with governance responsibility -- setting policy, overseeing the independent
 administrator and monitoring the arbitration process.
     The new board consists of plaintiff and defense attorneys, consumer health
 advocates, labor representatives, physicians, nurses and health policy
 leaders. In addition to his role at UCSF, Dr. Werdegar, the new chair of the
 board, has served as the Director of the California Office of Statewide Health
 Planning and Development under Governor Pete Wilson, and as the San Francisco
 Director of Public Health under Mayors Dianne Feinstein and Art Agnos.  "Dr.
 David Werdegar brings an envious record as a leader, innovator and bridge-
 builder within the health care and health policy arenas," said David M.
 Lawrence, MD, chairman and CEO of Kaiser Foundation Health Plan, Inc.  "The
 arbitration system has shown tremendous improvements in the last two years. I
 am convinced that this new broadly representative and experienced board will
 bring about even more improvement in the future.  Our members can be assured
 that Kaiser Permanente's arbitration system is in trustworthy hands."
 
     The new board consists of the following members:
 
      Terry Bream, RN
      Manager, Clinical Services
      Kaiser Permanente - Southern California
 
      Lark Galloway-Gilliam, MPA
      Executive Director
      Community Health Councils of Los Angeles
 
      Tessie Guillermo
      Executive Director
      Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum
 
      Dan Heslin
      Director, Employee Benefits
      The Boeing Company, California Region
 
      Cornelius Hopper, MD
      Vice President for Health Affairs, Emeritus
      University of California
 
      Philip Madvig, MD
      Associate Executive Director for Quality
      The Permanente Medical Group
 
      Kenneth R. Pivo, Esq.
      Attorney at Law, Irvine
 
      Cruz Reynoso
      Professor of Law
      UCLA School of Law
 
      Charles N. Sabatino
      Vice President, Program Public and Professional Liability Claims
      Kaiser Foundation Health Plan, Inc.
 
      Linda Sanchez-Valentine
      Executive Secretary-Treasurer
      Orange County Central Labor Council
 
      Mary Wiss, Esq.
      Attorney at Law, San Francisco
 
 

SOURCE Kaiser Permanente
    OAKLAND, Calif., April 13 /PRNewswire/ -- A reorganized and strengthened
 governance structure now oversees the independent administration of the
 arbitration system at Kaiser Permanente.  With new members who bring increased
 consumer representation the new Arbitration Oversight Board will be chaired by
 David Werdegar, MD, MPH, professor of community medicine, emeritus, UCSF
 School of Medicine.
     "It is an honor to be the chair of this distinguished board.  It serves a
 vital function," said Dr. Werdegar.  "The board represents the California
 spectrum of perspectives and communities which should make it particularly
 effective in representing the needs of Kaiser Permanente members. We have set
 our sights on making this a model arbitration system and we are eager to get
 to work on achieving that goal."
     The board's mission is to ensure a speedy, cost-effective, and fair
 arbitration process that protects the privacy of the participants. The
 revamped board will set policy for and oversee the independent administration
 of Kaiser Permanente's arbitration system. In addition, the board will
 periodically review and evaluate the experience of those using the arbitration
 system and revise the system rules as necessary. Kaiser Permanente members and
 other interested parties will be regularly informed of the board's efforts to
 ensure a fair arbitration process.  The Independent Administrator's Office
 will report to the Oversight Board.
     Responding to the California Supreme Court's criticism of the health
 plan's self-administered system in the 1997 decision, Engalla v. Permanente
 Medical Group, Kaiser Permanente convened a Blue Ribbon Advisory Panel to
 evaluate its arbitration process and recommend improvements. The panel
 recommended that Kaiser Permanente turn over administration of its arbitration
 system to an independent firm and create a consumer advisory group to oversee
 the work. The advisory group that was initially created was mainly advisory.
 With the restructuring of the panel it now will have a representative panel
 with governance responsibility -- setting policy, overseeing the independent
 administrator and monitoring the arbitration process.
     The new board consists of plaintiff and defense attorneys, consumer health
 advocates, labor representatives, physicians, nurses and health policy
 leaders. In addition to his role at UCSF, Dr. Werdegar, the new chair of the
 board, has served as the Director of the California Office of Statewide Health
 Planning and Development under Governor Pete Wilson, and as the San Francisco
 Director of Public Health under Mayors Dianne Feinstein and Art Agnos.  "Dr.
 David Werdegar brings an envious record as a leader, innovator and bridge-
 builder within the health care and health policy arenas," said David M.
 Lawrence, MD, chairman and CEO of Kaiser Foundation Health Plan, Inc.  "The
 arbitration system has shown tremendous improvements in the last two years. I
 am convinced that this new broadly representative and experienced board will
 bring about even more improvement in the future.  Our members can be assured
 that Kaiser Permanente's arbitration system is in trustworthy hands."
 
     The new board consists of the following members:
 
      Terry Bream, RN
      Manager, Clinical Services
      Kaiser Permanente - Southern California
 
      Lark Galloway-Gilliam, MPA
      Executive Director
      Community Health Councils of Los Angeles
 
      Tessie Guillermo
      Executive Director
      Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum
 
      Dan Heslin
      Director, Employee Benefits
      The Boeing Company, California Region
 
      Cornelius Hopper, MD
      Vice President for Health Affairs, Emeritus
      University of California
 
      Philip Madvig, MD
      Associate Executive Director for Quality
      The Permanente Medical Group
 
      Kenneth R. Pivo, Esq.
      Attorney at Law, Irvine
 
      Cruz Reynoso
      Professor of Law
      UCLA School of Law
 
      Charles N. Sabatino
      Vice President, Program Public and Professional Liability Claims
      Kaiser Foundation Health Plan, Inc.
 
      Linda Sanchez-Valentine
      Executive Secretary-Treasurer
      Orange County Central Labor Council
 
      Mary Wiss, Esq.
      Attorney at Law, San Francisco
 
 SOURCE  Kaiser Permanente