The Washington Post is reporting about a study by consulting firm Avalere Health which proves that healthcare plans purchased through Obamacare exchanges offer limited doctor and hospital choices when compared to plans purchased elsewhere.
Consumers who bought insurance on the health exchanges last year had access to one-third fewer doctors and hospitals, on average, than people with traditional employer-provided coverage, according to an analysis released Wednesday.
Compared with traditional employer coverage, exchange plans had networks with 42 percent fewer cancer and cardiac specialists; 32 percent fewer mental health and primary-care doctors, and 24 percent fewer hospitals, the Avalere analysis found.
The report underscores the importance of consumers knowing whether particular doctors or hospitals are included in their plans’ networks. Some plans, such as HMOs, don’t permit out-of-network coverage.It also underscores one of the problems with the President's signature bill, it is not consumer centric.
Insurance companies tend to be excluding traditional, high-cost teaching hospitals and “expensive, prestigious providers” from the networks, said Dan Mendelson, Avalere’s chief executive. That’s not necessarily bad for consumers, he said, because having several choices of providers does not always improve quality of care.I believe the technical term for that is horse poop. First of all in my experience there is a reason why certain healthcare providers are "cheaper" than others. In most cases when I have been forced to go to the cheaper doctors they are saving money either in their offices (filthy) or worse in care by looking for the cheapest treatment or not sending someone to a needed specialist. Even if by some miracle the quality of care is the same, just the fact that a patient is going to a doctor they trust and are familiar with has to help with care.
A poll last year by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that the people most likely to buy coverage on the insurance marketplaces were more willing than the public at large and people with employment-based coverage to accept a narrower network of doctors and hospitals in exchange for lower costs. In general, older people and those with higher incomes prefer broad networks, even if they cost more, while younger people and those with lower incomes are more evenly divided.Obamacare exchanges: just another way progressive programs limit your freedom.