Health Plan Narrow Networks: Highlighting Transparency Deficiencies for Consumers

A recent conference hosted by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation on health system transparency allowed a diverse group of stakeholders – state and federal regulators, an insurance industry executive, a provider, and CHIR’s own Sabrina Corlette to discuss how the emergence of narrow provider networks on the Affordable Care Act’s marketplaces has spotlighted deficiencies in the information available for consumers to make good plan choices. Sabrina Corlette shares some of the issues debated and discussed. Continue reading

CHIR Launches First in Video Series: Coffee Conversations on Timely Health Insurance Topics

We at the Center on Health Insurance Reforms are excited to share the first of an upcoming video series on timely health insurance topics. In our debut video, CHIR experts Sabrina Corlette, JoAnn Volk, and Dave Cusano provide a preview of upcoming action at the National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ (NAIC) national meeting to address concerns about network adequacy of health plans offered through the new health insurance Marketplaces. Continue reading

Changing Provider Networks In Marketplace Health Plans: Balancing Affordability And Access To Quality Care

While narrow provider networks are by no means new to health insurance, the practice has received renewed attention as plans participating in the marketplaces turn to network design to keep premium costs low. While consumers benefit from more affordable insurance, overly narrow networks can risk the quality of care consumers receive and increase their out-of-pocket costs. In this blog post originally published by Health Affairs, CHIR’s Sabrina Corlette and JoAnn Volk and the Urban Institute’s Robert Berenson and Judy Feder discuss the cost-access trade-offs for consumers and offer a few recommendations for policymakers. Continue reading

More New Resources Available to State Regulators

A set of new tools for state insurance regulators, as well as updated versions of some older resources, have recently been posted on the Robert Wood Johnson State Health Reform Assistance Network (State Network) web site. CHIR faculty Sally McCarty, David Cusano, and Max Farris, who serve as technical assistance professionals (TAPS) in the State Network Program, developed the new resources. Sally McCarty describes them here and provides information about an upcoming Webinar to introduce them and demonstrate their use. Continue reading

Narrow Networks Under the ACA: Financial Drivers and Implementation Strategies

The ACA’s essential health benefits and metal tier coverage standards, guaranteed issue, and community rating requirements help level the playing field among insurers. To compete on price, many are turning to limited network products. CHIR experts David Cusano and Amy Thomas discuss insurers’ approaches to the development of plan networks in the post-ACA era in a new blog post originally published by Health Affairs. Continue reading

Changing Health Plans, Changing Provider Networks: What They Mean for Consumers and How States Can Help

Did the President tell the truth when he told the American people: “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor”? Are health plans narrowing their provider networks and if so, what does it mean for consumers and the state officials charged with protecting them? CHIR experts Sabrina Corlette and Sally McCarty tackle these thorny issues in their latest blog. Continue reading