Kaiser Permanente Botches Its Kidney Transplant Center Project

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Kaiser Permanente Botches Its Kidney Transplant Center Project Kaiser Permanente is one of the country’s foremost health maintenance organizations (HMOs), also referred to as integrated managed care organizations. HMOs provide health care that is fulfilled by hospitals, doctors, and other providers with which the HMO has a contract. While Kaiser is a non- profit organization, the company earned $ 34.4 billion in revenues in 2007. Kaiser has approximately 170,000 employees, over 13,000 doctors, and serves 8.7 million members in nine states. The company is headquartered in Oakland, CA. Kaiser is known for pioneering electronic medical records and currently boasts the world’s largest electronic medical record storage system. The company also consistently ranks among the top HMOs in customer satisfaction. However, a 2004 attempt by Kaiser to handle kidney transplants on its own by setting up a transplant center was a public relations and information technology disaster. The company forced its members to transfer to its kidney transplant program without having adequately prepared to treat those patients. In 2004, Kaiser implemented a kidney transplant program in Northern California under which trans-plants would be performed in- house at a transplant center owned and managed by Kaiser. Previously, the HMO had contracted with nearby university- affiliated California hospitals, such as UC San Francisco and UC Davis. The fledgling transplant center was shut down just two years later because of a litany of mistakes pertaining to paperwork, technology, and procedural planning. Through the duration of the doomed project, twice as many people died waiting for a transplant as received successful transplants. Patients now receive care from local hospitals once again. Kaiser did very little correctly in its attempt to create its own kidney transplant program. The company lost track of records when transferring them to the new transplant center. More than 1,000 of the 1,500...
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