Many Health Law Exchange Plans Have 'Narrow Networks'

Some new health insurance plans sold through the health law's online insurance exchanges -- in an effort to keep premiums down -- severely limit where new enrollees can get care.

Kaiser Health News: Capsules: Marketplace Plans' Networks Are Very Small, Study Finds; 
To keep premium prices down for individuals and small businesses buying coverage through new online marketplaces, insurers have created smaller networks of hospitals. But consumers and policy experts have wondered, just how small? Turns out, many are very small (Appleby, 12/12).

California Healthline: Narrow Networks In Covered California Plans Causing Confusion In San Diego
It's difficult to quantify just how narrow some of the provider networks are compared with those being sold outside of Covered California, and the networks remain in flux. But, a Los Angeles Times analysis of insurance data conducted prior to Covered California's Oct. 1 launch found that Health Net's exchange plans have provider networks one-third the size of those available through its employer policies. ... Statewide, the Times reported that Blue Shield of California would provide exchange customers with access to about 50 percent of its regular physician network (Zamosky, 12/12).

This is part of Kaiser Health News' Daily Report - a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. The full summary of the day's news can be found here and you can sign up for e-mail subscriptions to the Daily Report here. In addition, our staff of reporters and correspondents file original stories each day, which you can find on our home page.