Kaiser Permanente Botches Its Kidney Transplant Center Project

928 WordsMar 2, 20134 Pages
Kaiser Permanente Botches Its Kidney Transplant Center Project Kaiser Permanente is one of the country’s foremost health maintenance organizations (HMOs), also referred to as integrated managed care organizations. HMOs provide health care that is fulfilled by hospitals, doctors, and other providers with which the HMO has a contract. While Kaiser is a non- profit organization, the company earned $ 34.4 billion in revenues in 2007. Kaiser has approximately 170,000 employees, over 13,000 doctors, and serves 8.7 million members in nine states. The company is headquartered in Oakland, CA. Kaiser is known for pioneering electronic medical records and currently boasts the world’s largest electronic medical record storage system. The company also…show more content…
Unlike other companies, IT mismanagement in health care companies can cost individuals their lives, and in Kaiser’s case many plaintiffs seeking damages against the company believe the errors surrounding the Kaiser Transplant Center have done just that. At the outset of the transition, Kaiser mailed potential kidney recipients consent forms but did not offer specific directions about what to do with the forms. Many patients failed to respond to the letter, unsure of how to handle it, and others returned the forms to the wrong entity. Other patients were unable to correct inaccurate information, and as a result, UNOS was not able to approve those patients for inclusion on Kaiser’s repopulated kidney wait list. Despite all of the IT mishaps, the medical aspect of the transplant program was quite successful. All 56 transplant recipients in the first full year of business were still living one year later, which is considered to be strong evidence of high quality. But as the organizational woes continued to mount, Kaiser was forced to shut the program down in 2006, absorbing heavy losses and incurring what figures to be considerable legal expenses. Kaiser paid a $ 2 million fine to be levied by the California Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC) for the various state and federal regulations it failed to adhere to in its attempt to set up a transplant program. Kaiser was

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