IDAHO HEALTH CARRIER EXTERNAL REVIEW ACT
41-5903. definitions. For purposes of this chapter:
(1) "Administrative record" means all nonprivileged documents, records or other health information which was submitted, considered, generated or relied upon by the health carrier in the course of making the adverse benefit determination, including, but not limited to, documents, records or other information that constitutes the plan’s policy statements or guidance concerning the denied treatment or benefit, all records provided by the covered person or the covered person’s medical care provider related to the denied treatment or benefit, all records provided to an independent review organization as part of the independent review of the denied treatment or benefit and the opinion issued by the independent review organization.
(2) "Adverse benefit determination" means a determination by a health carrier or its designee utilization review organization that an admission, availability of care, continued stay or other health care service that is a covered benefit has been reviewed and, based upon the information provided, does not meet the health carrier’s requirements for medical necessity, appropriateness, health care setting, level of care, effectiveness or has been determined to be an investigational service, and the requested service or payment for the service is therefore terminated, denied or reduced.
(3) "Ambulatory review" means utilization review of health care services performed or provided in an outpatient setting.
(4) "Authorized representative" means:
(a) A person to whom a covered person has given express written consent to represent the covered person in an external review;
(b) A person authorized by law to provide substituted consent for a covered person; or
(c) A family member of the covered person or the covered person’s treating health care professional only when the covered person is unable to provide consent.
(5) "Best evidence" means evidence based on randomized clinical trials.
(a) If randomized clinical trials are not available, then cohort studies or case-control studies;
(b) If studies in paragraph (a) of this subsection (5) are not available, then case-series.
(6) "Case-control study" means a retrospective evaluation of two (2) groups of patients with different outcomes to determine which specific interventions the patients received.
(7) "Case management" means a coordinated set of activities conducted for individual patient management of serious, complicated, protracted or other health conditions.
(8) "Case-series" means an evaluation of a series of patients with a particular outcome, without the use of a control group.
(9) "Certification" means a determination by a health carrier or its designee utilization review organization that an admission, availability of care, continued stay or other health care service has been reviewed and, based on the information provided, satisfies the health carrier’s requirements for medical necessity, appropriateness, health care setting, level of care and effectiveness.
(10) "Clinical review criteria" means the written screening procedures, decision abstracts, clinical protocols and practice guidelines used by a health carrier to determine the necessity and appropriateness of health care services.
(11) "Cohort study" means a prospective evaluation of two (2) groups of patients with only one (1) group of patients receiving a specific intervention(s).
(12) "Concurrent review" means utilization review conducted during a patient’s hospital stay or course of treatment.
(13) "Covered benefits" or "benefits" means those health care services to which a covered person is entitled under the terms and conditions of a health benefit plan.
(14) "Covered person" means a policyholder, subscriber, enrollee or other individual participating in a health benefit plan. A covered person includes the authorized representative of the covered person.
(15) "Director" means the director of the Idaho department of insurance.
(16) "Discharge planning" means the formal process for determining, prior to discharge from a facility, the coordination and management of the care that a patient receives following discharge from a facility.
(17) "Disclose" means to release, transfer or otherwise divulge protected health information to any person other than the individual who is the subject of the protected health information.
(18) "Evidence-based standard" means the conscientious, explicit and judicious use of the current best evidence based on the overall systematic review of the research in making decisions about the care of individual patients.
(19) "Expedited external review" is the procedure available for urgent care requests for external review.
(20) "Expert" means a specialist with experience in a specific area about the scientific evidence pertaining to a particular service, intervention or therapy.
(21) "Facility" means an institution providing health care services or a health care setting, including, but not limited to, hospitals and other licensed inpatient centers, ambulatory surgical or treatment centers, skilled nursing centers, residential treatment centers, diagnostic, laboratory and imaging centers and rehabilitation and other therapeutic health settings.
(22) "Final adverse benefit determination" means an adverse benefit determination, as defined in section 41-5903(2), Idaho Code, involving a covered benefit that has been upheld by a health carrier, or its designee utilization review organization, at the completion of the health carrier’s internal grievance process procedures as set forth in the covered person’s health benefit plan.
(23) "Health benefit plan" means a policy, contract, certificate or agreement offered or issued by a health carrier to provide, deliver, arrange for, pay for or reimburse any of the costs of health care services.
(24) "Health care professional" means a physician or other health care practitioner licensed, accredited or certified to perform specified health care services consistent with state law.
(25) "Health care provider" or "provider" means a health care professional or a facility.
(26) "Health care services" means services for the diagnosis, prevention, treatment, cure or relief of a health condition, illness, injury or disease.
(27) "Health carrier" means an entity subject to the insurance laws and regulations of this state, or subject to the jurisdiction of the director, that contracts or offers to contract to provide, deliver, arrange for, pay for or reimburse any of the costs of health care services, including a disability insurance company, a health maintenance organization, a nonprofit hospital and health service corporation, or any other entity providing a plan of health insurance, health benefits or health care services.
(28) "Health information" means information or data, whether oral or recorded in any form or medium, and personal facts or information about events or relationships that relates to:
(a) The past, present or future physical, mental or behavioral health or condition of an individual or a member of the individual’s family;
(b) The provision of health care services to an individual; or
(c) Payment for the provision of health care services to an individual.
(29) "Independent review organization" means an entity that conducts independent external reviews of final adverse benefit determinations.
(30) "Investigational" means the definition provided in the covered person’s health benefit plan; if the health benefit plan does not provide a definition of "investigational," it shall be defined as follows: Any treatment, procedure, facility, equipment, drug, device or commodity, regardless of its medical necessity, which is experimental, or in the early developmental stage of medical technology, for which there are no randomized clinical trials or, absent such trials, for which there are no cohort studies or case-control studies or, absent such studies, then for which there is no case-series. The determination by the health carrier will be based on objective data and information obtained by the health carrier and reviewed, by competent medical personnel, according to the following:
(a) The technology has final approval from the appropriate government regulatory bodies;
(b) Medical or scientific evidence regarding the technology is sufficiently comprehensive to permit well substantiated conclusions concerning the safety and effectiveness of the technology;
(c) The technology’s overall beneficial effects on health outweigh the overall harmful effects on health; and
(d) The technology is as beneficial as any established alternative.
When used under the usual conditions of medical practice, the technology should be reasonably expected to satisfy the criteria of paragraphs (c) and (d) of this subsection (30).
(31) "Medically necessary" or "medical necessity" means the definition provided in the covered person’s health benefit plan; if the covered person’s health benefit plan does not define "medically necessary" or "medical necessity," these terms shall mean health care services and supplies that a physician or other health care provider, exercising prudent clinical judgment, would provide to a covered person for the purpose of preventing, evaluating, diagnosing or treating an illness, injury, disease or its symptoms, and that are:
(a) In accordance with generally accepted standards of medical practice;
(b) Clinically appropriate, in terms of type, frequency, extent, site and duration, and considered effective for the covered person’s illness, injury or disease;
(c) Not primarily for the convenience of the covered person, physician or other health care provider; and
(d) Not more costly than an alternative service or sequence of services or supply, and at least as likely to produce equivalent therapeutic or diagnostic results as to the diagnosis or treatment of the covered person’s illness, injury or disease.
For these purposes, "generally accepted standards of medical practice" means standards that are based on credible medical or scientific evidence.
(32) "Medical or scientific evidence" means evidence found in the following sources:
(a) Peer-reviewed scientific studies published in or accepted for publication by medical journals that meet nationally recognized requirements for scientific manuscripts and that submit most of their published articles for review by experts who are not part of the editorial staff;
(b) Peer-reviewed medical literature, including literature relating to therapies reviewed and approved by a qualified institutional review board, biomedical compendia and other medical literature that meet the criteria of the national institutes of health’s library of medicine for indexing in index medicus (MEDLINE) and elsevier science ltd. for indexing in excerpta medicus (EMBASE);
(c) Medical journals recognized by the U.S. secretary of health and human services under section 1861(t)(2) of the federal social security act;
(d) The following standard reference compendia:
(i) The American hospital formulary service — drug information;
(ii) Drug facts and comparisons;
(iii) The United States pharmacopoeia — drug information; and
(iv) The American dental association accepted dental therapeutics.
(e) Findings, studies or research conducted by or under the auspices of federal government agencies and nationally recognized federal research institutes, including:
(i) The federal agency for healthcare research and quality;
(ii) The national institutes of health;
(iii) The national cancer institute;
(iv) The national academy of sciences;
(v) The centers for medicare and medicaid services;
(vi) The federal food and drug administration; and
(vii) Any national board recognized by the national institutes of health for the purpose of evaluating the medical value of health care services; or
(f) Any other medical or scientific evidence that is comparable to the sources listed in paragraphs (a) through (e) of this subsection (32).
(33) "Person" means an individual, a corporation, a partnership, an association, a joint venture, a joint stock company, a trust, an unincorporated organization, any similar entity or any combination of the foregoing.
(34) "Post service review" means a review of medical necessity conducted after services have been provided to a patient, but does not include the review of a claim that is limited to an evaluation of reimbursement levels, veracity of documentation, accuracy of coding or adjudication for payment.
(35) "Pre-service review" means utilization review conducted prior to an admission or a course of treatment.
(36) "Protected health information" means health information:
(a) That identifies an individual who is the subject of the information; or
(b) With respect to which there is a reasonable basis to believe that the information could be used to identify an individual.
(37) "Randomized clinical trial" means a controlled, prospective study of patients who have been randomized into an experimental group and a control group at the beginning of the study with only the experimental group of patients receiving a specific intervention, which includes study of the groups for variables and anticipated outcomes over time.
(38) "Second opinion" means an opportunity or requirement to obtain a clinical evaluation by a provider other than the one originally making a recommendation for a proposed health care service to assess the clinical necessity and appropriateness of the initial proposed health care service.
(39) "Urgent care request" means a claim relating to an admission, availability of care, continued stay or health care service for which the covered person received emergency services but has not been discharged from a facility, or any pre-service or concurrent care claim for medical care or treatment for which application of the time periods for making a regular external review determination:
(a) Could seriously jeopardize the life or health of the covered person or the ability of the covered person to regain maximum function;
(b) In the opinion of the treating health care professional with knowledge of the covered person’s medical condition, would subject the covered person to severe pain that cannot be adequately managed without the disputed care or treatment; or
(c) The treatment would be significantly less effective if not promptly initiated.
The opinion of the covered person’s treating health care professional with knowledge of the covered person’s medical condition that a request is an urgent care request should be treated with deference.
(40) "Utilization review" means a set of formal techniques designed to monitor the use of, or evaluate the clinical necessity, appropriateness, efficacy or efficiency of health care services, procedures or settings. Techniques may include ambulatory review, pre-service review, second opinion, certification, concurrent review, case management, discharge planning or post service review.
(41) "Utilization review organization" means an entity that conducts utilization review, other than a health carrier performing a review for its own health benefit plans.
[41-5903, added 2009, ch. 87, sec. 1, p. 241; am. 2011, ch. 122, sec. 1, p. 333.]