Health Net performs UM, quality improvement (QI) and care management functions.
Health Net uses InterQual criteria, Medicare guidelines, Hayes Medical Technology Directory®, Health Net medical policies, and MHN level-of-care criteria as the basis for making utilization decisions. Case-specific determinations of medical necessity are based on the needs of the individual member and the characteristics of the local network. Appropriate providers are involved in the adoption, development, updating (as needed), and annual review of medical policies and criteria. MHN is required to use approved scientifically based criteria. Health Net national medical policy statements are currently available on the Health Net provider website under Resources for Your. Medical policy statements and other clinical criteria, such as InterQual and Hayes Technology Assessments, are available by calling the Health Net Provider Services Center.
Health Net's concurrent review staff perform clinical reviews for HSP members. The objective of concurrent review is to review clinical information for medical necessity during a member's hospital confinement, coordinate discharge plans, and screen for quality of care concerns.
The hospital is required to notify Health Net's Hospital Notification Unit within 24 hours or one business day when an admission occurs on a weekend, whenever a Health Net member is admitted. Failure to notify according to the requirements in the Provider Participation Agreement (PPA) may result in a denial of payment. The first review occurs within 24 hours or one business day of admission and is performed either on-site or over the telephone by a Health Net concurrent review nurse.
Use of standardized review criteria is required to ensure consistency of decision-making. Health Net's concurrent review nurses use InterQual guidelines to determine medical necessity of the inpatient stay. Review of the medical records is performed as required on an ongoing basis.
If, based on available information, an acute level of care is determined to be no longer necessary, Health Net's concurrent review nurse reviews the clinical information with a Health Net regional medical director. The Health Net concurrent review nurse also notifies the Hospital Utilization Review Department that the continued stay is in question. Discussion with the Health Net regional medical director focuses on alternate levels of care and discharge plans.
If the Health Net regional medical director determines that based on available medical information the member is ready for discharge, the attending physician is contacted to discuss alternatives. If the attending physician agrees with the Health Net regional medical director, the member is discharged to home or transferred to an appropriate, lower level of care. Concurrent review staff monitor the member's care, and coordinate transfers and any needed post-discharge services with the HSP provider.
If the attending physician and the Health Net regional medical director disagree, Health Net may issue a denial letter to the hospital, with copies to the attending physician. A denial letter contains the basis for the denial and information on the appeals and grievance process, as required by state and federal law.
Non-Delegated Prospective Review
Under the terms of a member's coverage with Health Net, Health Net must provide pre-service authorization for elective inpatient services and selected outpatient procedures for participating) HSP providers. Following review by a Health Net medical director, authorization is approved or denied and communicated in writing to the requesting physician and the member.
When requesting a pre-service authorization for elective services or selected outpatient procedures, documentation by the referring participating physician must include:
- Prior written authorization request for specified outpatient services, specifying:
- Services requested and number of visits.
- Information about previously attempted but unsuccessful treatments.
- Sufficient clinical information to establish medical necessity.
Providers may utilize the Inpatient California Health Net Commercial Prior Authorization (PDF) or Outpatient California Health Net Commercial Prior Authorization (PDF) forms, or refer to the Prior Authorization topic for additional information..
- Prior written authorization request for hospitalization which is submitted by the primary care physician (PCP) or specialist must include:
- Necessity of admission.
- Pre-admission work-up.
- Number of medically necessary inpatient days.
- If admission is denied, the requesting physician and member is sent the following information:
- Written rationale for denial with the specific reason delineated.
- Information as to how to appeal Health Net's determination.
- Suggestions for alternative treatment.
Health Net does not pay claims without a Health Net authorization number. Authorization and claims dates must correspond and the service type must match before payment can be rendered. If the dates of service change after the authorization number has been issued, the provider is required to notify Health Net. When a claim is received without a Health Net authorization number or the dates and services do not match the recorded authorization, further investigation is conducted by the Medical Review Unit (MRU). MRU examines hospital records and authorization notes in Unity to reconcile the discrepancies.
Retrospective review is the review of medical services after care has been rendered. Retrospective review involves an evaluation of services that fall outside Health Net's established guidelines for coverage or require a medical necessity or benefit determination to authorize a request for payment of a claim.