CareCounsel Endorses American Association of Health Plans' Patient Assistance Recommendations

San Rafael, CA, November 15, 1999 — CareCounsel, LLC today announced its support for the American Association of Health Plans' (AAHP) new "PACT" initiative urging member health plans to establish patient assistance programs to empower consumers as they navigate managed care systems. Under the "PACT" initiative, announced on November 10, 1999, health plans would provide services such as consumer educational information, toll-free hotlines and Internet resources to restore and strengthen consumers' trust and confidence.

"The time is right for health plans to offer independent, consumer-driven patient assistance and benefits advocacy services directly to their members," remarked Lawrence N. Gelb, President and CEO of CareCounsel." For nearly two years, CareCounsel has provided healthcare assistance programs to employees and family members of forward-looking companies that recognize the value of supporting their people as they use managed care benefits."

"To be effective and credible," Gelb continued, "these services have to be delivered by an independent organization whose sole mission is to empower consumers in the changing healthcare environment. We are heartened to see that the AAHP's "PACT" initiative mirrors the design of CareCounsel's innovative service delivery system."

CareCounsel of San Rafael, CA is the national market leader in the emerging area of health benefits advocacy. The company currently has contracts to provide healthcare consumer assistance services nationwide to beneficiaries of nine employers, one healthcare purchasing coalition and one insurance company.

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