Dear PUA MEMBERS,
I hope that everyone is safe and well.
First, concerns have been raised from some of our members for the Executive Council to give a position statement regarding the letter by AHMHOPI to the PCS chairman, committee on HMO, and RVS Dr. Fernando Lopez with regards to the guidelines on to how we deal with HMO patients. The most controversial issue is found in Section 2.2, which states that:
“PCS HMO-accredited doctors cannot and should not require HMO patients…who are scheduled for either emergency or elective surgeries to undergo RTPCR or Rapid Tests for SARR-Cov2 screening prior to surgery…”
This greatly puts the safety of all involved at risk. The PUA is firm in the principle that the safety and protection of both patients and surgeons are of utmost importance and should never be compromised. We are in communication with the Dr. Fernando Lopez regarding this matter and we will keep you posted on the progress and developments as negotiations are being made by all parties involved.
I would also like to bring up discussions in our Viber group which have evolved over the past few days. A number of our members have commented on the professional fees that we receive from the HMO as unfair and undervalued to the amount of effort to surgeries that we perform. As similar sentiments have been within the organization, the committee on HMO and RVS have submitted to AHMHOPI and other HMO’ s thru the PCS in our desire for an increase in the professional fees. We have to channel this to the PCS as to put pressure on the HMO’s this request. As they say, there is strength in greater numbers. On the issue of who chooses to accept or decline HMO’s, our constitution does not explicitly define the regulation on billing process of our patients. It is therefore the prerogative of the member to accept or decline an HMO patient. While it is a fact that we are in need of better compensation especially in this time of pandemic, let us put all our efforts in the fight against COVID-19.
Rather than let this situation divide us, let us unite and help each other on how we can make this a fruitful year despite the catastrophic circumstances. Let us rally together to protect everyone, including our patients. Your executive council is working to spearhead activities that will further invigorate the society and everyone’s support is needed to make this a success.
Let us have this year truly a ONE PUA year. God bless all of us and keep us all safe.
Harry G. Longno, MD, FPUA