The California Medical Association has withdrawn from a physician performance initiative led by Blue Shield of California, saying it is flawed and could mislead patients.
Calif. association quits performance initiative
Beginning June 1, the Blue Ribbon Recognition Program will measure the performance of 13,000 high-volume California physicians on quality standards. Physicians with above-average scores in eight measures, including preventive screenings and diabetes, will get a blue ribbon icon added to the online profile on Blue Shield of California's website. The program is not based on cost. AARP, the California Public Employees' Retirement System and the Service Employees International Union are backing the program, which was crafted with the Pacific Business Group on Health. Michael-Anne Browne, M.D., Blue Shield of California's medical director for quality, says in a statement that quality data for individual physicians has been lacking. “That changes today,” Browne says, “thanks to a diverse group of stakeholders who worked collaboratively to determine how the data should be collected, tallied and responsibly reported to the public.” But the California Medical Association says the measures don't give a complete picture of a physician's work and use faulty data. “Blue Shield's ratings are defective and Blue Shield is exercising poor judgment to publish them,” Brennan Cassidy, M.D., president of the CMA, says in a statement.
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