Tuesday, June 25, 2013

NUHW Wins $4 Million Fine against Kaiser Permanente for Denying Care to Mental Health Patients

Check out this news! 

Today, the California Department of Managed Health Care announced it's fining Kaiser Permanente $4 million for serious violations uncovered by NUHW. 

The $4 million fine is the second largest in the agency's history!

Here's what happened:

NUHW represents 2,500 clinicians who care for mental health patients in dozens of Kaiser's clinics, hospitals and emergency rooms across California. In 2011, NUHW filed this complaint with state officials alleging that Kaiser systematically understaffs its clinics and forces mental health patients to wait for weeks to get care.

Kaiser's fat-cat executives, of course, denied the allegations. And SEIU-UHW's Dave Regan reacted to the complaint by cozying up even closer to its law-breaking corporate "partner."

Then, in March, the state issued a 23-page report that blasted Kaiser for serious violations of state law -- including forcing patients to wait weeks and weeks for treatment. The state even found that Kaiser uses duplicate paper lists to hide patients' lengthy wait times for appointments.

Finally, today, the state announced a $4 million fine against Kaiser! The agency also filed a "Cease and Desist Order" to force Kaiser to provide its patients with the care they need, deserve and pay for.

Tasty's sources say NUHW's victory is a huge win for mental health patients and healthcare workers in California... especially because Kaiser is the state’s largest HMO with 7 million members.

Quite impressive what a real union can actually do, right?

Here's NUHW’s press release about today's $4 million fine against Kaiser. More info and press coverage is posted on NUHW’s website here.