Health Insurer to Require Authorization for All Nonvaginal Hysterectomies

March 4, 2015 | Strategic Insights for Health System


Healthcare risk managers may be interested in a February 26, 2015, Wall Street Journal article that discusses the ramifications of a move by the nation's largest health insurer to require prior authorization before physicians are permitted to perform most kinds of hysterectomies. The decision by UnitedHealth Group Inc. was driven in part by research that revealed that the use of power morcellators to perform hysterectomies and remove uterine fibroids could inadvertently spread undetected cancerous material to other parts of the body (see the July 21, 2013, HRC Alerts). The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has since recommended against the use of power morcellators for most women who undergo these procedures (see the July 16, 2014, HRC Alerts). According to the article, only vaginal hysterectomies performed on an outpatient basis won't require prior approval.

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