Thursday, April 18, 2013

More CCO Transparency Passes Out of Committee

According to the Lund Report, HB 2960, which will require CCOs to take public comment at their board meetings, as well as open their mandated Community Advisory Concils to the public, has passed out of the House committee, which means it still has a chance to become law this legislative session. 

Although the majority of the 15 CCOs do open their council meetings to the public, as stated in the Lund Report article from today, "at least one -- Umpqua Health Alliance in Roseburg — holds those meetings in private and refuses to disclose the names of their council members."

Oregon Patients Rights Association has been advocating for public accountability and transparency of these CCOs since we formed at the end of last year.  Our requests for information about those who serve on the Community Advisory Committee for our local CCO, Umpqua Health Alliance have been rejected by DCIPA (the private for-profit doctors' group that owns and controls UHA).  It seems that this unwillingess to share even information about who is suppose to be reprenting us at these Community Advisory Councils made some lawmakers understand the problem with CCOs operating in private. 

The reluctance to even tell the public who served on the public outreach body led several legislators to support the bill who earlier had been skeptical. .
“That testimony is what made me convinced that we do need this bill,” Keny-Guyer said.

Although the much stronger Senate Bill he sponsored did make it out of committee,  State Senator Chip Shields understands the issue quite clearly:  "CCOs are about the massive reallocation of public dollars."  As such, we cannot allow them to operate in private. 

Contact your state representative, particularly Tim Freeman and ask him to support HB 2960 and other demands for CCO accountability and transparency.

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