In response to this situation, managed care organizations emerged as nonprofit organizations to reduce health-care costs and provide broader coverage. Managed care organizations are groups of physicians, specialists, and often hospitals, coordinating with each other to provide care for a set monthly fee. These systems control the patient's access to doctors, specialists, laboratories, and treatment facilities. HMOs hire physicians as salaried employees rather than paying them on a fee-for-service basis. In this system, the medical clinics receive the same amount of money regardless of how frequently patients see the doctor. Because no connection exists between services rendered and fees paid, the incentive is to keep costs down. Critics of this system point out that business managers or non-medical personnel trying to hold down costs frequently overturn medical decisions made by doctors.
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Managed Care Organizations, treatment facilities. HMOs, public dissatisfaction. HMOs