Our SALUD Demands DMHC Deny HealthCare Partners’ Application for Knox-Keene Act License

  Our SALUD Demands DMHC Deny HealthCare Partners’ Application for Knox-Keene
  Act License

   Our SALUD further demands the medical group be prevented from accepting
                       institutional risk in the future

Business Wire

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- April 30, 2013

Advocates for the Latino community of Southeast and East Los Angeles are
calling on the Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC) to deny an application
from LA-based HealthCare Partners (HCP) medical group for a Knox-Keene Act
license.

Our SALUD learned yesterday that HCP filed an application for a Knox-Keene Act
license on Thursday, April 25, with the DMHC. For more than six months, Our
SALUD has publically raised allegations that HCP has illegally operated as a
health plan without a Knox-Keene Act license for more than a decade, allowing
the medical group to accept global institutional risk for patients and
endangering the lives of nearly one million residents in the Latino
communities of LA.

“The simple act of applying for the Knox-Keene Act license proves undeniably
that HCP for more than a decade had been operating unlawfully by accepting
global institutional risk,” said Our SALUD Community Advocate Nestor Valencia.
“The DMHC should deny HCP’s application and should immediately ban the medical
group from accepting institutional risk in the future. If the DMHC approves
this license, and hands down no penalty action for operating without one, then
it’s a slap in the face to the nearly one million HCP patients in Southeast
and East Los Angeles. HCP has put profits over patients for far too long.”

In an April 10, 2013, letter, in response to a Feb. 28 letter from Sen. Bob
Huff, the DMHC said HCP had committed to submitting an application for a
Knox-Keene license by April 25, 2013. A representative of Sen. Huff’s office
confirmed today it had received confirmation from the DMHC that HCP did
formally apply.

However, on the DMHC website there is no mention of HCP on the list of pending
applications for a Knox-Keene Act license.

“I hope this is just laziness on the part of the DMHC and not some sort of
cover up,” said Our SALUD Community Advocate Elba Romo. “Either way it shows a
severe lack of transparency on the part of DMHC. People have a right to know
and comment on the pending application.”

On Dec. 16, 2012, in a letter to Sen. Darrell Steinberg, DMHC Director Brent
Barnhart said his department had been actively engaged in discussions with HCP
about its business model since the beginning of 2012. “As a result, HCP has
committed to applying for a Knox-Keene Act license,” Barnhart stated in his
letter.

“HCP blatantly disregarded the promise it made in 2012. It never had any
intention of applying for a Knox-Keene Act license until we started making
noise,” Romo said. “What’s more, the DMHC knew that HCP was operating without
the license the whole time. It was only until the beginning of 2012 that they
publically said they were aware.”

On March 22, 2013, Our SALUD sent a letter to the Office of the Attorney
General asking for a full investigation into the alleged unlawful activity of
HCP. Our SALUD did not receive a response. They have now filed a public
records request with the Office of the Attorney General to provide documents
that Our SALUD alleges will show violations of the ban on the corporate
practice of medicine.

PUBLIC RECORD REQUEST LETTER SENT TO ATTORNEY GENERAL KAMALA HARRIS ON APRIL
29, 2013

April 29, 2013

Kamala Harris
Office of the Attorney General
CA Department of Justice
Public Records Act Coordinator
PO Box 944255
Sacramento, CA 94244-2550

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the California Public Records Act and Information Practices Act,
we respectfully request the Office of the Attorney General and/or Department
of Justice provide us with copies of the following electronic and/or paper
records of the following:

1.All communications between the Department of Justice and/or the Office of
    the Attorney General and the California Department of Managed Health Care
    that relate in any way to the complaint filed with the Attorney General by
    Our SALUD.
2.All communications between the Department of Justice and/or the Office of
    the Attorney General and the California Department of Managed Health Care
    that relate in any way to HealthCare Partners Medical Group or DaVita
    HealthCare Partners, Inc. and/or any subsidiary or affiliate thereof.
3.All communications between the Department of Justice and/or the Office of
    the Attorney General and CalPERS that relate in any way to HealthCare
    Partners Medical Group or DaVita HealthCare Partners, Inc. and/or any
    subsidiary or affiliate thereof.
4.All communications between the Department of Justice and/or the Office of
    the Attorney General and the CalSTERS that relate in any way to HealthCare
    Partners Medical Group or DaVita HealthCare Partners, Inc. and/or any
    subsidiary or affiliate thereof.
5.All documents that relate in any way to any inquiry or investigation begun
    by the Office of the Attorney General into the merger between HealthCare
    Partners and DaVita.
6.All documents reflecting any memoranda, legal opinion or other opinion of
    the Attorney General concerning whether a professional medical corporation
    may be owned by, or directly or indirectly controlled by, a corporation
    consisting of non-physician shareholders.
7.All documents related to any actions taken by the Attorney General or
    Department of Justice against any person or corporation alleged to be
    violating the ban on corporate practice of medicine, and/or the unlicensed
    practice of medicine.

By “Communications” I mean every type of communication including phone call
records and emails. The time requested is 10 years prior or longer if the
records exist. If communications include close session items, the report on
the agenda close session items with the attorney of record shall be part of
this public records request.

If you need to reach me you can do so at (424) 272-5386.

Sincerely,

Nestor Valencia
Our SALUD

About Our SALUD

Our SALUD (Somos Aliados Latinos Unidos por la Dignidad - Latino Allies United
for Dignity), is a grassroots coalition and healthcare watchdog representing
civic, community and business leaders from the Southern California Latino
communities. We believe that our low-income, minority communities deserve
quality healthcare access equal to other communities. We believe our
communities are not unlike other communities in California that are yearning
for best practices and quality health care. With the new Affordable Care Act,
we believe legislators should practice transparency and good government in
implementing new health care delivery models, which should include
exceptional, free of conflict-of-interest, community-patient focused decision
makers at every level. For more information visit www.oursaludnow.org

Contact:

Perry Communications Group
Matt Notley, 916-671-6764
matt@perrycom.com
Kassy Perry, 916-296-8303
kassy@perrycom.com
 
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