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Government Lobbying (Bermuda Medical Society)

Government Lobbying

The PR Challenge

Troncossi Public Relations was briefed to provide public relations support to the Bermuda Medical Society and Bermuda Medical Association during their negotiations with the Health Insurance Association of Bermuda (HIAB) regarding fees for hospital based procedures. The HIAB had recently taken the debate public through the media.

Strategy

Troncossi refined the doctors’ messaging and got their story on the front page of the newspapers and on local radio. Troncossi also drafted letters advising the Minister that the doctors would begin to bill patients directly and that it is not appropriate for the Minister to set the doctors’ fees. The Consultancy liased with a paraplegic patient in Boston who had his insurance coverage for rehabilitation cut and arranged a telephone interview with The Royal Gazette. This resulted in a large news story which supported the doctors.

Results

A great amount of support within the community was generated for the doctors and the full CPT code book has been agreed which will allow doctors to bill for some of the  “consultancy” work that they have previously undertaken on a voluntary basis as well as new procedures, not previously covered under the BRVS system:

  • Bermuda Sun published results of a recent poll in which residents were asked to rate the trustworthiness of professionals, and doctors were ranked at the top of the list.
  • The Chairman of the HIAB signed a schedule with the BMA and BMS to use the full CPT code book as well as an agreement on fees.
  • Government Senate Leader, Senator David Burch, said publicly that he feels the insurance companies are a cartel who agree among themselves what premiums to charge and what benefits to pay.
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