A Massachusetts attorney general's investigation into contracting between healthcare insurers and providers reveals "serious system-wide failings" that "threatens access to affordable, quality healthcare," according to a preliminary state report released today.
"Our review shows that the current system of healthcare payment is not always value-based and health care providers throughout the state are compensated at widely different rates for providing similar quality and complexity of services," said Attorney General Martha Coakley, who last week lost a widely followed U.S. Senate race to Republican Scott Brown in Massachusetts.
The report showed that insurance companies pay some doctors and hospitals twice as much as others for similar care.
The report "raises concerns that existing systemic disparities in reimbursement may, over time, create a provider marketplace dominated by very expensive 'haves' as the lower and more moderately priced 'have nots' are forced to close or consolidate with higher paid systems," Coakley said following the yearlong investigation.
Coakley said the report outlines six key findings that have "powerful implications for the healthcare marketplace in Massachusetts":