Philadelphia Has Some of Country's Broadest ACA Networks
A front page story in the Philadelphia Inquirer details the results of an Inquirer-Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics (LDI) research collaboration that assessed the "narrowness" of the regional Affordable Care Act exchange's local networks of hospitals and doctors.
The work, led by LDI Executive Director Daniel Polsky, PhD, found that insurance plans in both southeastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey "have some of the broadest physician networks in the United States."
Elsewhere in the country, insurers' practice of employing "narrow network" restrictions to limit the hospitals and physicians that policy holders can use has become a major point of consumer frustration.
The LDI research team determined that insurers on both sides of the Delaware have been routinely offering much broader networks than insurers elsewhere across the country.
The Inquirer article suggested that one reason the region's ACA customers have more generous options in their plans is because both southeastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey are dominated by Blue Cross and Blue Shield, whose business philosophies have favored broader networks.
The newspaper also pointed out that a rising regional trend has consumers placing more value on a wider choice of physicians than price alone.