May 14, 2014

If You Like Your Doctor…

What ever happened to keeping a promise? It was a simple promise, one of the many that President Obama gave when pushing through his partisan health-care law: if you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor.

First, Americans were promised if they liked their health plan they could keep their health plan. When that promise was broken in plain sight for millions of people, Americans hoped that at least they could keep their doctor in the new plan they were forced to choose.

Another promise, another disappointment.

The Associate Press reported today that many consumers are discovering their doctors don’t accept their new health plans, even when the plan said it would.

Michelle Pool, for example, made sure to enroll in a plan that included her long-time primary care doctor whom she knew and trusted. Only after her insurance card came in the mail did she find out her insurer was mistaken and her doctor didn’t accept her new plan.

Narrowing networks are one of the few ways insurers can try to keep costs down while accounting for Obamacare’s other costly demands (yet even so, premiums are set to rise in 2015). Unfortunately, this leaves many American without the doctors they were promised they could keep.

And Ms. Pool is not alone. Danielle Kimberley in New Jersey was met with 96 rejections when she tried to find a doctor that would take her insurance.

Donna Morse of Kentucky first lost her insurance and then couldn’t find a doctor on her new plan.

These stories are shared by Mary West of South Carolina, Ben Rosenthal, a cancer Patient in California, Donald Webb of New York, Shawna Simpson of Tennessee, and thousands and thousands more.

It doesn’t have to be this way. Obamacare’s onerous demands pushed insurers to limit networks as one of the few ways to keep costs from skyrocketing even more than they already have.

Free market, patient-centered health care reforms would work where Obamacare has continually failed.