Medical Insurance Reviews and Patient Privacy Concerns

In their recent paper, Peter Q. Harris, MD, Melissa Abraham, PhD, MSc and Bruce Cohen, MD, PhD use examples from insurer review of behavioral health care to note instances in which current practices prevent the sharing of information in the insurer record with the clinical team, even when that information might be essential for guiding optimal clinical choices or avoiding dangerous outcomes. The authors propose ethically-based and clinically wise changes in the rules and practices for sharing information so that all parties with a valid need have key data that could benefit patients or even required for appropriate treatment.

"This paper is intended to start a discussion of possible solutions to current prohibitions on sharing private medical information that may improve care or even save lives. Ignoring these issues is unwise and perpetuates unnecessary fragmentation in the US health care system."

Read the full text on Harvard Review of Psychiatry's website.