A panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld the dismissal of an ERISA suit that could have forced health maintenance organizations to disclose financial incentive arrangements with physicians. Those arrangements, the plaintiffs claimed, harmed patients by causing physicians to keep usage of health care, referrals and testing to a minimum.

The panel issued the opinion in the case of first impression, Ehlmann v. Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Texas, Tuesday.

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