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October 7, 2013

Cioppa: Anthem can’t force provider switch

Maine Bureau of Insurance Superintendent Eric Cioppa has decided that a new health insurance plan from Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield and MaineHealth cannot require existing policyholders to stop seeing doctors in the Central Maine Healthcare system.

The Portland Press Herald reported the companies were asked to come up with a new plan for its policyholders in 10 counties in southern and western Maine, a group that consists of around 9,000 customers.

The decision follows a series of hearings about Anthem's plan, which earned sharp criticism from officials with the Central Maine Healthcare System. That network includes Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston, Rumford Hospital in Rumford and Bridgton Hospital in Bridgton. Anthem sought to exclude those hospitals and three others from its individual insurance plan, which will be offered on a new online health insurance marketplace that is a part of the Affordable Care Act.

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