American Journal of Law & Medicine

ERISA: no duty to disclose physician compensation arrangements - Ehlmann v. Kaiser Found. Health Plan of Texas.

ERISA: No Duty to Disclose Physician Compensation Arrangements--Ehlmann v. Kaiser Found. Health Plan of Texas(1)--The United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit held that Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs) have no fiduciary obligation to disclose physician compensation under ERISA absent special circumstances or specific inquiry.(2)

Ehlmann, a participant in an employee health plan, sued several HMOs under section 404 of ERISA for breach of fiduciary duty. Elhmann argued that the HMOs had a duty to disclose their physician compensation arrangements, alleging that the arrangements give participating physicians incentives to keep usage of health care, referrals and testing to a minimum, and thus harm the patient. …

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