Connecticut Doctors Say No to Obamacare Plans

February 11, 2014

Doctors and patients are voicing their concern over the limited availability of doctors due to the low reimbursement rate resulting from Obamacare plans.

Dr. Steven Levine, an ear nose and throat physician for decades, has been forced to stop his practice from accepting most Obamacare insurance plans offered on the state healthcare exchange because the reimbursement rates on a majority of Obamacare plans are too low.

"When we saw what those exchange plans were paying, the ones that we could not participate, we did not. In the case of a fair number of them, they’re paying at rates that are just absolutely worse than Medicare and almost at the level of Medicaid," he told WVIT-CT.

Other doctors are also opting not to accept new health exchange plans.

Such changes have prevented patients like Deanna Larose, a Waterford, Connecticut resident, from seeing their favorite doctors.

Larose expressed her anguish: "It broke my heart…I’ve been waiting a year and a half, this is my favorite doctor."

The limited availability of doctors comes on the heels of Connecticut patients receiving their new insurance cards.

Dr. Michael Saffir, an orthopedist, is accepting Obamacare plans, but says that there are difficulties for all physicians.

"There’s uncertainty. It’s a radically different program, it’s not just a new insurer," he told WVIC-CT.

Dr. Levine said that notifying patients that they will not be able to take care of them is challenging. "When there’s intrusion in our ability to do that in an effective way, it’s very uncomfortable and very painful for us, but of course much more so for the patients," he said.

Published under: Obamacare