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Kaiser Permanente Files Lawsuit Against Queen’s Health System

June 12, 2019, 2:39 PM HST (Updated June 12, 2019, 2:39 PM)
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Kaiser Permanente has filed a lawsuit in federal court against Queen’s Health System (QHS) to protect its patients from unfair billing practices, according to a KP press release sent on June 12, 2019.

Without a contracted rate for its commercial members, QHS is threatening to bill patients for the balance of any charges, above what KP pays, KP said in the release. This practice, known as balance billing, is intolerable and puts patients, who may already be dealing with serious and stressful health issues, in the middle of a contract dispute.

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Kaiser Permanente said it must act to protect its patients.

“While we remain committed to working toward a fair and equitable agreement, we cannot agree to QHS demands for unreasonable rate increases,” the release continued. “Such payments are unsustainable and would greatly increase medical inflation and escalate the overall cost of care for all Hawaii residents. KP currently is paying what is called usual, customary and reasonable or UCR. These are based on industry benchmarks and existing hospital contracts in the Hawai‘i market.”

KP said it looks forward to a court reviewing this case and says they are confident KP will prevail following an impartial review of the facts.

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