NCMS Responds to Editorial

In response to the Raleigh News and Observer’s editorial calling the hearing officer’s ruling in the dispute involving  Blue Cross Blue Shield and radiologists a “win for patients,” NCMS CEO Bob Seligson sent the following Letter to the Editor:

“In response to your editorial titled “A Win for Patients,” you claim that the pro-BCBS ruling also was a win for consumers. As representatives for doctors and their patients since 1849, this issue is clearly another example of insurance companies’ unfair business practices. It is outrageous that any insurance company can unilaterally change the terms of their contract with doctors or patients. Ultimately, this business practice is a huge loss for patients. The whim of a payer should not dictate the service a doctor can provide. Our argument in this particular case simply revolved around BCBS upholding the law – when they deem changes need to be made to a contract with a doctor, they need to present those changes and both parties then need to negotiate a solution. Doctors want to treat their patients. Insurance companies want to make money. True, BCBS won the public relations battle on this one with an expensive ad campaign and favorable press coverage. When insurance contracts – with patients as well as their physicians – are honored, and doctors are respected for the care and service they provide, only then will patients truly be the winners.”

Although the newspaper choose not to publish our letter, we thought our members should know of our response.


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