VETO AB 1235 - Testimonial of Charles Phillips MD - Corporate Control of Medical Peer Review
As submitted to http://gov.ca.gov/interact#email, on September 20, 2010, at 3:55 PM
Subject: VETO AB 1235 - Corporate Control of Medical Peer Review
- Testimonial of Charles Phillips MD, FACEP
To the Honorable Governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger,
Dear Governor Schwarzenegger,
Following, please find, copy of the e-mail I just received from Dr. Phillips, recipient of the Semmelweis Society International " Clean Hands " Award in 2008,
regarding AB 1235, see:
Charles Phillips MD, FACEP
– Dr. Phillips has worked with Senator Grassley's Finance Committee regarding HMOs that withhold clinical testing and Lumetra deficiencies.
He is a medical consultant and reviewer for USA TODAY. Hours after he was quoted in an article that appeared on April 29, 2008, he was advised by two hospitals that his clinical privileges were in imminent jeopardy. www.HARP.org, www.kaiserpapers.info
From: Charles Phillips
Subject: Governor - Please Veto AB 1235
Date: September 20, 2010 11:24:26 AM PDT
Dear Governor Schwarzenegger [sent through Dr. M],
I would like you to understand that the federal HMO Act of 1973 and its updates thereafter set up a methodology by which physicians could become enriched by not testing or diagnosing patients - letting late diagnosis fall to the state and federal government to pick up the pieces. The public also has little clue that "non-profit" has no meaning any more in the race toward medical greed - "non-profit" Kaiser and "for profit" Anthem each squeezing out about two billion in profits per year.
The biggest surprise is that - half of that money is split with the physicians - most of whom have formed "risk" panels - with only one such IPA letting the public see the numbers (Hill IPA). The CMA at times becomes neutralized by this as well. Often the "risk" panels join AMA and CMA in large numbers - dues aided by plans/hospitals.
There are still physicians within the medical community who avoid these "risk" formulas so that they can diagnose their patients without the misadventure of withholding care for profit. Such physicians are labeled "outliers" because they don't become easily herded into profit "silos."
Rather, they the outliers tend to take the best histories, do the right testing, and otherwise become patient popular. But such activities risk profits tied to executive and MD retirement portfolios, the latter sometimes at the $2 million value. So these outliers have to be knocked off hospital staffs as competitors - and wrecked
as potential outside whistle blowers.
The best way to knock a physician off a hospital staff is by sham peer review. This has become so commonly used - perhaps 80% of "peer review" - that there is a whole Greely Corp. video on how to go about it. The video explains how to tell about ten nurses to suddenly be annoyed at the same physician, the one who calls in
to pester about the post operative blood count being safe at night. The video is very popular and followed quite well.
One HMO likes to have women on the clinic or hospital staff suddenly claim sexual nuances - harder to defend against. A whole group of attorneys feed of sham peer review in California - taking turns being judges and prosecutors as needed. A common place of origin is Colorado, so that they can escape any bad feelings among
physicians who are paying attention. One such Colorado attorney has an international maritime HMO intermediate pretending to screen all American physicians - but mixing up who is good and bad.
Adding to this shame is that hospitals across the country - and certainly throughout California - have set up Risk Management offices right across from Medical Records (the latter now Health Information Technology centers).
In Risk Management charts can be altered easily to both knock out physicians as well as to block the truth in medical error - the very thing caused by the HMO speedups.
And despite HIPAA federal and state guarantees of medical chart "integrity" - there is none. The USA TODAY - we me as its chosen expert - made that clear on the front page issue in March of 2008. Of course, I was threatened by two hospitals the same day the paper came out. Next, the second part of the newspaper series was pulled
by the editor and the reporter left the paper - coincidence or not.
AB 1235 has unfortunately been crafted as a new way for hospitals and their most cooperative physician panels to knock out physicians as if bowling pins unable to avoid the quasi-legal ball. The goal of the bill is to falsely empower the peer review "judges" so as to bypass the good and recent reasoning of the California Supreme Court.
The Court had an HMO Friend of the Court Brief - and said no thanks. That position was not in the interest of patients. [The Courts rarely do much for doctors but can see the bigger view when patient safety is undercut.]
Your signature will seal the fate of independent opinion among physicians - those few still willing to fight for high quality care (some proud to beoutliers where the inside is so full of fraud). If you do sign AB 1235, at the same time you will doom millions of patients to care in the hands of the less trained who are supervised by the less ethical - the new and deadly "team care" - MD as coach.
If you sign the bill, California will pick up the bill for this drop in quality - e.g. the diabetics going on rapidly to dialysis (instant Medicare and MediCal - M+M). So increase the California budget accordingly within the current negotiations.
So you need to veto 1235. At the same time you might spend some time understanding what HHS figured out - moving patients to HMOs (often disguised as PPOs) cost the government over 9% more than leaving patients to make their own Medicare decisions. It is about all the hidden profits. And those profits made in California are not staying in the state. Note that Anthem's profit is shipped to Indiana to the hungry WellPoint, Inc. "parent."
If you were to re-inject the Hippocratic Oath back into California medicine, you would create more jobs (money staying in California) and cut down on medical greed (money generally moving out of California). Thank you for your time. Sometimes Governors make their best decisions in the last six months of their terms.
It is time for the right legacy decision. Veto AB 1235 - misguided empowerment to peer review "judges."
Chuck Phillips, MD - 559-917-8997 - Fresno
Dear Governor Schwarzenegger,
In view of all the above, you MUST VETO AB 1235, as it is still a "work in progress",
Gil Mileikowsky MD - http://allianceforpatientsafety.org/socalphysgm.pdf