90 Days to Change

The following is a letter from a Kaiser member that was sent last week to US Senator Dianne Feinstein’s staffer Katie Gross and cc’d to me. The writer gave me permission to publish it and asked that her name be withheld. It reads…

I have been trying to get urgent mental health treatment at Kaiser Oakland for several months. Not only did I face blatant discrimination because I disclosed a history of depression and anxiety but I was insulted, discouraged and hounded with phone calls after I filed a grievance. I was told several times that Kaiser was “solution focused” and it was suggested that I take a vacation or join a gym. Kaiser called me several times a day for many weeks after my grievance. I thought they were calling me to give me the proper medical care, only to be aggressively asked to commit to not taking this…

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Proof that Kaiser Dumps Psychiatric Patients

Blog for Mental Health 2015


Institutional stigma against people with mental illnesses is what allows Kaiser to think it can get away with destroying the lives of its patients.

Kaiser Permanente Insurance Co. was hit with a class action lawsuit in California on Tuesday, alleging the company of strong-arming the most disabled psychiatric patients into canceling their plans with the large insurance provider.

Plaintiffs Douglass Kerr and Matthew Szitzkar-Kerr allege in their class action lawsuit that psychiatric patients who are covered by Kaiser’s insurance plan are told by Kaiser that they will only receive care if they cancel their insurance. Then, allege the plaintiffs, psychiatric patients become uninsured and eligible for public assistance, including Medicare and California’s Medicaid program “Medi-Cal.”

The lawsuit was filed in September, 2014 but KP is shamelessly continuing the practice, as evidenced by the following denial letter, dated October 18, 2014, which was posted to our Facebook Page by a family member of a patient unrelated to the lawsuit. You can read the entire letter by clicking on the images at the bottom of this post, but this is the meat of it:

We denied this request because it is not a covered benefit of her Plan with Kaiser Permanente. Our review determined that your daughter’s treatment team at the Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Medical Center Hospital has considered transfer to an IMD facility for further management. However, the IMD is requiring that your daughter be disenrolled through her coverage with Kaiser Permanente so that the services will be covered by Medi-Cal as her primary coverage.

Of course, as always, they attempt to deflect responsibility as they have done here by claiming, “…the IMD is requiring that your daughter be disenrolled,” when it has done no such thing. A more honest way to word that would be, “..the IMD requires payment for services rendered, and because KP is refusing to pay, Medi-Cal is your only other option.” Another lie, because when the grievance was turned over to the California Department of Managed Health Care, Kaiser suddenly agreed to pay (within the last few days), but only AFTER subjecting the family to wasted time and multiple denials, apparently hoping they would just go away.

Kaiser Thieves