Some consumers who bought insurance under President Barack Obama’s Federal Exchange are experiencing buyer’s remorse after realizing that their longtime doctors aren’t accepting the new plans.
Before the law took effect, experts warned that narrow networks could impact patients’ access to care, especially in cheaper plans. But with insurance cards now in hand, consumers are finding their access limited across all price ranges – sometimes even after they were told their plan would include their current doctor.
Narrow networks are part of the economic trade-off for keeping premiums under control and preventing insurers from turning away those with pre-existing conditions. Even before the Affordable Care Act, doctors and hospitals would choose to leave a network – or be pushed out – over reimbursement issues as insurers tried to contain costs.
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Jeffrey R. Ungvary