“It’s very worrisome for hospitals,” said Chas Roades, a health care consultant. “Suddenly, the plan you’re relying on for payment is also competing with you at the front end of the delivery system.” In other news, Walmart takes on CVS and Amazon, and patients are left floundering when insurer drops doctors.
The Wall Street Journal: Physicians, Hospitals Meet Their New Competitor: Insurer-Owned Clinics
Some of the largest health insurers are capitalizing on recent massive deals by steering patients toward clinics they now own, controlling both delivery and payment for health care. The trend creates worries for rival doctor groups and hospital companies that have invested deeply in buying up physician practices, which now increasingly compete against offerings from insurers. (Wilde Mathews, 2/23)
Bloomberg: Walmart Takes On CVS, Amazon With Low-Price Health-Care Clinics
The main drag of Calhoun, Ga., a town of about 16,000 an hour’s drive north of Atlanta, is dotted with pawnshops, liquor stores, and fast-food joints. Here, as in thousands of other communities across America, the local Walmart fulfills most everyday needs—groceries, car repairs, money transfers, even hair styling. But now visitors to the Calhoun Walmart can also get a $30 medical checkup or a $25 teeth cleaning, or talk about their anxieties with a counselor for $1 a minute. (Boyle, 2/25)
Kaiser Health News: Needy Patients ‘Caught In The Middle’ As Insurance Titan Drops Doctors
For five years, Rasha Salama has taken her two children to Dr. Inas Wassef, a pediatrician a few blocks from her home in this blue-collar town across the bay from New York City. Salama likes the doctor because Wassef speaks her native language — Arabic — and has office hours at convenient times for children. “She knows my kids, answers the phone, is open on Saturdays and is everything for me,” she said. (Galewitz, 2/25)
This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.
Syndicated from https://khn.org/morning-breakout/insurers-steering-patients-toward-clinics-theyve-bought-in-new-threat-to-hospitals-providers/