Banner Health, Carondelet among providers not accepting ACA insurance plans in 2017

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The fourth open enrollment season for Arizona's insurance exchange boasts health plans with noticeably narrower provider networks than in previous years, reports Arizona Daily Star.

Many insurance companies that incurred significant losses on the ACA exchanges last year slimmed down their provider network in 2017 to cut expenses and better manage spending. That means a greater number of people who purchase plans on the exchange may lose in-network access to their preferred primary care physician.

In Arizona, for instance, two major healthcare providers — Phoenix-based Banner Health and Tucson-based Carondelet Health Network — are not considered in-network by any health plan offered on the state exchange in 2017.

Nationally, the number of healthcare providers planning to accept new patients with insurance purchased through ACA exchanges has declined. A recent survey of Sermo — a physician social network — users also found 57 physicians said they will accept new patients with coverage under the ACA next year, compared to 61 percent of physicians in 2015.

"[Insurance] cost is an issue, but the big problem this year is access to physicians," Tucson-based insurance broker Raymond Magnuson told Arizona Daily Star.

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