Got A Health Care Grievance? There’s A Place To Complain
by Claudia Buck, Sacramento Bee
Your health insurance company denied your treatment. Or it won’t provide the prescription drug you need. Or you’ve got a billing dispute. Or your longtime doctor was dropped from your health plan.
When you’ve got a complaint about health care, where are you gonna go? The MyPatientRights.org site is one starting point.
Launched last summer by the California Chronic Care Coalition, a group of more than 30 consumer health organizations, it’s intended to provide an easy link to the state Department of Managed Health Care, which handles consumer complaints with the state’s 122 licensed health plans.
“I’m getting calls from people who are frantic,” said Liz Helms, the coalition’s president and CEO. “Things have happened to them, such as they lost their doctor or they don’t know what to do about getting billed hundreds of dollars for out-of-network doctors. I had one man call who had a heart transplant and couldn’t get his anti-rejection medications. There are some crazy stories.”
Too often, Helms said, consumers have no idea where or to whom they should lodge a grievance. She said the site, which has had 300,000 visitors in less than a year, is not a criticism of the state’s complaint process, but an effort to help consumers navigate the system more easily.