TASK FORCE TO STUDY UTILIZATION REVIEW OF THE SURGICAL TREATMENT OF MORBID OBESITY

Cathy Carr-Dadin, R.N., Chair (chosen by Task Force)

Appointed by Department of Health & Mental Hygiene: Sally Mae Pinkstaff, M.D.; Michael Schweitzer, M.D.; Mansur Shomali, M.D.; Kuldeep Singh, M.D.; David Von Rueden, M.D.

Appointed by Maryland Insurance Administration: Gregory Alexander, M.D.; Les Chalmers, R.N.; Vera Dvorak, M.D.; Richard Fornadel, M.D.

Appointed by Maryland Hospital Association: Cathy Carr-Dadin, R.N.; Maureen Fama.

Appointed by Maryland Weight Loss Surgery Legislative Action Committee: Michelle Engelmann

Representing Maryland Health Care Commission: Michael J. (Ben) Steffen

Contact: Michael J. (Ben) Steffen

c/o Maryland Health Care Commission
4201 Patterson Ave., Baltimore, MD 21215 - 2299
(410) 764-3570
e-mail: bsteffen@mhcc.state.md.us

In June 2004, the Task Force to Study Utilization Review of the Surgical Treatment of Morbid Obesity was created (Chapter 486, Acts of 2004). The Task Force reviewed what utilization review procedures currently were used by health insurers that provide for surgical treatment of morbid obesity. Also, guidelines of the National Institutes of Health and any other nationally recognized guidelines or criteria were examined. The Task Force then recommended certain guidelines or criteria for reviewing the use of surgical treatment for morbid obesity, as well as reasonable procedures to document patient compliance with the guidelines.

In November 2004, the Task Force reported to the Senate Finance Committee and the House Health and Government Operations Committee.

Originally authorized through May 31, 2005, the Task Force was reauthorized in 2005. It then reviewed the emerging literature on the surgical treatment of morbid obesity and recommend guidelines or criteria that include changing standards of care and reasonable procedures for documenting patient compliance, particularly with dietary or nutritional therapy (Chapter 301, Acts of 2005).

In December 2007, the Task Force submitted its report.

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