September 13, 2004

 

Department of Managed Health Care Announces New Chief of Enforcement

(Sacramento) – Cindy Ehnes, Director of the Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC), has announced that Amy L. Dobberteen, an attorney with the DMHC’s Office of Legal Services, is the new Chief of the Enforcement Division.

“Amy’s vast knowledge of the litigation process will serve the DMHC well as we refocus efforts on enforcing the Knox-Keene Health Care Service Plan Act as it relates to the managed care industry,” said Ehnes. “She will be tough but fair on violations in order to continue our tradition of protecting California HMO enrollees.”

While serving as second in command in the Office of Legal Services, Dobberteen represented the DMHC before state courts in defending the Department’s assessment authority and exclusive regulatory authority under the Knox-Keene Act. Prior to that, she served as Senior Counsel in the Office of Enforcement. Her state service began as Labor Relations Counsel with the Department of Personnel Administration.

Following her graduation from McGeorge Law School, Dobberteen served as Senior Associate at Greve, Clifford, Wengel & Paras, LLP in Sacramento for eight years. She argued cases in various county courts throughout the state and before the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District. She holds an undergraduate degree in Criminal Justice, Public Administration from San Diego State University.

In addition to pursuing consumer grievances and health plan violations, Dobberteen and her staff will focus on identifying trends or systemic problems within the plans, to ensure California enrollees are receiving both continuity of care and prompt access to care. She will also be enforcing new DMHC regulations to ensure the payment of claims by delinquent payors. Also, as an additional protection for consumers, the Office of Enforcement will take aggressive action against misleading advertising by vendors falsely claiming to offer health insurance products.

A native of Sacramento, Dobberteen is a ten-year board member and former vice-president of WEAVE and enjoys competing in triathlons, riding horses and cycling – often riding her bike to her downtown Sacramento office 23 miles each way.

The California Department of Managed Health Care is the only stand-alone HMO watchdog agency in the nation, touching the lives of more than 21 million enrollees. The Department has assisted more than 633,000 Californians through its 24-hour Help Center to resolve their HMO problems, educates consumers on health care rights and responsibilities, and works closely with HMO plans to ensure a better, more solvent and stable managed health care system.

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