San Jose, CA -(BUSINESS WIRE)- EK Health Services, a national leader in workers’ compensation managed care, has promoted Dr. Douglas Benner to Chief Medical Officer (CMO).
Benner joined EK Health in June, 2011 as Medical Products Business Development Officer after a long career with Kaiser Permanente, where he was the founding medical director of Kaiser Permanente’s Kaiser On-the Job and its Health Care Organization (HCO). As CMO, Benner is responsible for leading the operational management of EK Health’s physician services and medical staff administration.
Dr. Richard Thompson, who has been the CMO at EK Health for the past eight years, will now focus solely on the Next Step Medical Advisory Program℠ as its Medical Director. The Next Step Medical Advisory Program℠ is expanding rapidly and nationally, as clients recognize its value in bringing complex and expensive claims to closure. Thompson’s focus on this program allows him to impact the growing needs of clients and provide him well deserved personal time.
In his new role, Thompson will have a direct impact on the most difficult and costly chronic pain cases. Designed exclusively by EK Health, Next Step Medical Advisory Program℠ helps injured workers reclaim functionality and productive lives, while saving payers substantial sums in drug expenditures, a costly component of workers’ compensation medical claims.
“The key to my evolving decision to take this challenge was finding a worthy successor,” said Thompson. “Doug brings a wealth of experience and expertise to the organization and is a perfect fit as CMO.”
Named in 2010 among “The Most Influential People in CA Workers Compensation” by Workers’ Comp Executive, Benner is a diplomate of the American Board of Preventive Medicine in Occupational Medicine (ACOEM) and is certified as an Independent Medical Examiner and Medical Review Officer.
“I am looking forward to expanding my role at EK Health, and using my experience as a medical director of providers, and combining this with other CMO duties, including facilitating quality physician involvement in the UR, CM, and MPN departments,” said Benner, who is maintaining responsibilities for medical products business development.
Eunhee Kim, president and CEO of EK Health, said this executive team change is perfectly timed and suited for EK Health and for two extraordinarily dedicated individuals.
“These new roles come at a time when EK Health is expanding its reach nationally to make an even greater impact on medical and disability management services,” she said, noting EK Health’s commitment to transform the industry one-program-at-a-time to bring cost efficiencies and quality services to benefit all parties in workers’ compensation.