§ 33-20A-39. Certification of independent review organizations; conflict of interest; quality assurance mechanism; copies of nonproprietary information.

CODE OF GEORGIA

Title 33. INSURANCE

Chapter 20A. MANAGED HEALTH CARE PLANS

Article 2. PATIENT'S RIGHT TO INDEPENDENT REVIEW

Current through 2019-2020 Chapter 609

§ 33-20A-39. Certification of independent review organizations; conflict of interest; quality assurance mechanism; copies of nonproprietary information

(a) The department shall certify independent review organizations that meet the requirements of this Code section and any regulations promulgated by the department consistent with this article. The department shall deem certified any independent review organization meeting standards developed for this purpose by an independent national accrediting organization. To qualify for certification, an independent review organization must show the following:
(1) Expert reviewers assigned by the independent review organization must be physicians or other appropriate providers who meet the following minimum requirements:
(A) Are expert in the treatment of the medical condition at issue and are knowledgeable about the recommended treatment through actual clinical experience;
(B) Hold a nonrestricted license issued by a state of the United States and, for physicians, a current certification by a recognized American medical specialty board in the area or areas appropriate to the subject of review; and
(C) Have no history of disciplinary action or sanctions, including, but not limited to, loss of staff privileges or participation restriction, taken or pending by any hospital, government, or regulatory body;
(2) The independent review organization shall not be a subsidiary of, nor in any way owned or controlled by, a health plan, a trade association of health plans, a managed care entity, or a professional association of health care providers; and
(3) The independent review organization shall submit to the department the following information upon initial application for certification, and thereafter within 30 days of any change to any of the following information:
(A) The names of all owners of more than 5 percent of any stock or options, if a publicly held organization;
(B) The names of all holders of bonds or notes in excess of $100,000.00, if any;
(C) The names of all corporations and organizations that the independent review organization controls or is affiliated with, and the nature and extent of any ownership or control, including the affiliated organization's type of business; and
(D) The names of all directors, officers, and executives of the independent review organization, as well as a statement regarding any relationships the directors, officers, and executives may have with any health care service plan, disability insurer, managed care entity or organization, provider group, or board or committee.
(b) Neither the independent review organization nor any expert reviewer of the independent review organization may have any material professional, familial, or financial conflict of interest with any of the following:
(1) A managed care plan or entity being reviewed;
(2) Any officer, director, or management employee of a managed care plan which is being reviewed;
(3) The physician, the physician's medical group, health care provider, or the independent practice association proposing a treatment under review;
(4) The institution at which a proposed treatment would be provided;
(5) The eligible enrollee or the eligible enrollee's representative; or
(6) The development or manufacture of the treatment proposed for the eligible enrollee whose treatment is under review.
(c) As used in subsection (b) of this Code section, the term "conflict of interest" shall not be interpreted to include a contract under which an academic medical center or other similar medical research center provides health care services to eligible enrollees of a managed care plan, except as subject to the requirement of paragraph (4) of subsection (b) of this Code section; affiliations which are limited to staff privileges at a health care facility; or an expert reviewer's participation as a contracting plan provider where the expert is affiliated with an academic medical center or other similar medical research center that is acting as an independent review organization under this article. An agreement to provide independent review for an eligible enrollee or managed care entity is not a conflict of interest under subsection (b) of this Code section.
(d) The independent review organization shall have a quality assurance mechanism in place that ensures the timeliness and quality of the reviews, the qualifications and independence of the experts, and the confidentiality of medical records and review materials.
(e) The department shall provide upon the request of any interested person a copy of all nonproprietary information filed with it pursuant to this article. The department shall provide at least quarterly a current list of certified independent review organizations to all managed care entities and to any interested persons.

Cite as OCGA § 33-20A-39

History. Added by 2005 Ga. Laws 399, §2, eff. 5/10/2005.