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Doctors and Hospitals Saying No to Obamacare

Amanda Casanova | Contributor | Thursday, November 5, 2015

Doctors and Hospitals Saying No to Obamacare

Some reports are showing that patients who opt for Obamacare may have limited options when choosing a hospital or doctor.

According to US News, patients insured through have trouble finding providers who will accept the plan. Others are surprised when the provider bills them out-of-pocket costs.

The insurance company usually chooses which doctors or hospitals are eligible in the insurance network. However, plans through Obamacare usually pay out a lower reimbursement to doctors and hospitals.

"We have no idea what the plans are paying," said David Howard, professor in the department of health policy and management at Emory University. "That's closely guarded information. We can only draw conclusions based on anecdotal reports."

This year, the Obama administration has added a search feature to the website to allow patients to find specific hospitals and doctors.

Sylvia Burwell, the secretary for the Department of Health and Human Services, said her agency cannot force providers to accept the government plans.

There is no clear data on how many doctors are choosing not to accept insurance from the marketplace. In most states, doctors are allowed to decide which health insurance plan they will work with.

"It's not new to have providers turn down insurance plans, even before the Affordable Care Act," said Dr. Ben Sommers, a professor in the department of health policy and management at the T.H. Chan School of Public Health at Harvard University.

Publication date: November 5, 2015