Requirements for health carriers and participating providers
See bold sections below:
(1) A health carrier offering a managed care plan shall satisfy all the requirements contained in this section.
(2)(a) A health carrier shall establish a mechanism by which the participating provider will be notified on an ongoing basis of the specific covered health services for which the provider will be responsible, including any limitations or conditions on health care services.
(b) Every contract between a health carrier that offers closed plans or combination plans having a closed component and a participating provider shall set forth in writing a hold harmless provision specifying protection for covered persons. This requirement shall be met by including a provision substantially similar to the following:
“Provider agrees that in no event, including, but not limited to, nonpayment by the health carrier or intermediary, insolvency of the health carrier or intermediary, or breach of this agreement, shall the provider bill, charge, collect a deposit from, seek compensation, remuneration, or reimbursement from, or have any recourse against a covered person or a person, other than the health carrier or intermediary, acting on behalf of the covered person for health care services provided pursuant to this agreement. This agreement does not prohibit the provider from collecting coinsurance, deductibles, or copayments, as specifically provided in the evidence of coverage, or fees for uncovered health care services delivered on a fee-for-service basis to covered persons. Nor does this agreement prohibit a provider, except for a health care professional who is employed full time on the staff of a health carrier and has agreed to provide health care services exclusively to that health carrier’s covered persons and no others, and a covered person from agreeing to continue health care services solely at the expense of the covered person, as long as the provider has clearly informed the covered person that the health carrier may not cover or continue to cover a specific health care service or health care services. Except as provided herein, this agreement does not prohibit the provider from pursuing any available legal remedy.”
(c) Every contract between a health carrier that offers closed plans or combination plans having a closed component and a participating provider shall set forth that in the event of a health carrier or intermediary insolvency or other cessation of operations, covered benefits to covered persons will continue through the period for which a premium has been paid to the health carrier on behalf of the covered person or until the covered person’s discharge from an inpatient facility, whichever time is greater. Covered benefits to covered persons confined in an inpatient facility on the date of insolvency or other cessation of operations will continue until their continued confinement in an inpatient facility is no longer medically necessary.
(d) The contract provisions that satisfy the requirements of subdivisions (2)(b) and (c) of this section shall be construed in favor of the covered person, shall survive the termination of the contract regardless of the reason for termination, including the insolvency of the health carrier, and shall supersede any oral or written contrary agreement between a provider and a covered person or the representative of a covered person if the contrary agreement is inconsistent with the hold harmless and continuation of covered benefits provisions required by such subdivisions.
(e) In no event shall a participating provider collect or attempt to collect from a covered person any money owed to the provider by the health carrier.
(f) A health carrier shall make its selection standards for participating providers available for review by the director.
(g) At the time the participating providers execute contracts with the health carrier, a health carrier shall notify participating providers of the providers’ responsibilities with respect to the health carrier’s applicable administrative policies and programs, including, but not limited to, payment terms, utilization review, quality assessment and improvement programs, credentialing, grievance procedures, data reporting requirements, confidentiality requirements, and any applicable federal or state programs.
Prohibited Financial Incentives
(h) A health carrier shall not offer an inducement under the managed care plan to a provider to provide less than medically necessary health care services to a covered person.
(i) A health carrier shall not prohibit a participating provider from discussing treatment options with covered persons irrespective of the health carrier’s position on the treatment options or from advocating on behalf of covered persons within the utilization review or grievance processes established by the health carrier or a person contracting with the health carrier.
(j) A health carrier shall require a provider to make health records available to appropriate state and federal authorities involved in assessing the quality of care or investigating the grievances or complaints of covered persons, and to comply with the applicable state and federal laws related to the confidentiality of medical or health records.
(k) A health carrier and participating provider shall provide at least sixty days’ written notice to each other before terminating the contract without cause. The health carrier shall make a good faith effort to provide written notice of a termination within fifteen working days of receipt or issuance of a notice of termination to all covered persons who are patients seen on a regular basis by the provider whose contract is terminating, irrespective of whether the termination was for cause or without cause. Where a contract termination involves a primary care professional, all covered persons who are patients of that primary care professional shall also be notified.
(l) The rights and responsibilities under a contract between a health carrier and a participating provider shall not be assigned or delegated by the provider without the prior written consent of the health carrier.
(m) A health carrier is responsible for ensuring that a participating provider furnishes covered benefits to all covered persons without regard to the covered person’s enrollment in the managed care plan as a private purchaser of the managed care plan or as a participant in publicly financed programs of health care services. This requirement does not apply to circumstances when the provider should not render health care services due to limitations arising from lack of training, experience, skill, or licensing restrictions.
(n) A health carrier shall notify the participating providers of their obligations, if any, to collect applicable coinsurance, copayments, or deductibles from covered persons pursuant to the evidence of coverage, or of the providers’ obligations, if any, to notify covered persons of their personal financial obligations for noncovered health care services.
(o) A health carrier shall not penalize a provider because the provider, in good faith, reports to state or federal authorities any act or practice by the health carrier that jeopardizes patient health or welfare.
(p) A health carrier shall establish a mechanism by which the participating providers may determine in a timely manner whether or not a person is covered by the health carrier.
(q) A health carrier shall establish procedures for resolution of administrative, payment, or other disputes between providers and the health carrier.
(r) A contract between a health carrier and a provider shall not contain definitions or other provisions that conflict with the definitions or provisions contained in the managed care plan or the Managed Care Plan Network Adequacy Act.
(3) Subdivisions (2)(a) through (g) and (j) through (r) of this section become operative on July 1, 1999.