Understanding Social Security And Medicine
More than 12 million senior citizens enrolled in health maintenance organizations (HMOs) may soon have a new way to avoid getting short-changed in both the quality and cost of their health care. The head of a leading advocacy group is urging that Congress take strong steps to head off the double danger.
Michael J. Zabko, executive director of the 700,000-member TREA Senior Citizens League, called on Congress to pass a strong protection plan to keep HMOs from putting profit ahead of patients' rights:
For more information, send $1 shipping and handling and a self-addressed, business-sized envelope to TREA Senior Citizens League, Dept. MC01, 909 N. Washington St., Suite 301, Alexandria, VA 22314. (NAPSI)
- Patients must have the right to be treated by physicians of their choice, in or out of the network. They should have access to emergency care, and care outside the network, without previous authorization.
- HMOs should adopt a standard form to allow easy comparison between competing plans. Patients should be allowed to change plans annually.
- Misleading and abusive sales practices and other HMO violations should result in stiff fines by Federal regulators.
- HMOs should permit doctors to inform patients of all legitimate treatment options, however expensive.
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