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MD docs push for control of patients’ access to care

The Baltimore Sun, May 3, 2011

MedChi, the Maryland state medical society, adopted principles last weekend that the group's leaders say will protect patients' access to care. The principles will guide the group's legislative efforts. The doctors' group, which tussles with cost-conscious insurers over coverage, wants to establish itself as the primary decision makers for patients. "MedChi has increasingly heard from our physician members about the significant intrusion of health insurance plans into the patient-physician relationship, and about the adverse impact that these barriers to care can have on patient health," said Gene Ransom, CEO of MedChi, in a statement. Ransom claims insurers have a "well-established track record of implementing complex requirements" that end up being such a burden that some doctor quit their practices. Ransom said the move to electronic records around the state will be an opportunity to improve communications with insurers.