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Patients Suffer When Health Care Behemoths Quarrel Over Contracts
California Healthline

David Lerman, a Berkeley, Calif., lawyer, changed health plans this year only to learn that his new insurer has no contract with the dominant medical provider in his community.

Anthem Blue Cross of California, one of the state’s largest health insurers, is battling with Sutter Health over how much it should pay to care for tens of thousands of its enrollees in Northern California. Sutter operates 24 hospitals in the region and lists about 5,000 doctors in its network.

 “It’s not the peace of mind I thought I was buying to have the entire Sutter network — which is the biggest game in Northern California — be out-of-network,” said Lerman, whose family is insured through his wife’s job as a California State University professor.

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