Plan Directories Should Cross-Reference Physician Network Status

TMA Testimony by Rick Snyder, MD

House Insurance Committee
House Bill 2630 by Rep. Julie Johnson

March 26, 2019

Thank you, Chairman Lucio and committee members, for allowing me to testify today. My name is Dr. Rick Snyder, and I am a cardiologist from Dallas. Today I am testifying on behalf of the Texas Medical Association and its nearly 53,000 members across the state of Texas in support of House Bill 2630.  

As a cardiologist, I often refer my patients to a facility for necessary care. When making these referrals, the absolute last thing I want to do is refer them to an out-of-network facility. I recognize that this could create a surprise out-of-network balance bill for my patient. Additionally, this does not help my long-term relationship with the patient and potentially creates unnecessary financial stress for my patient.

As a physician, I rely on online health plan network directories to see not only my own network status but also that of physicians and facilities I refer patients to for additional care and treatment. While I can find what physicians are in network and what facilities are in network, there is no easy or uniform way to cross-reference the facilities at which the facility-based physicians provide services.   

I am grateful to Representative Johnson for filing this legislation because it provides a commonsense solution to this problem. It would require these online directories to create a guide, if you will, to which in-network facility-based physicians provide services at the in-network facilities. 

This will help me protect my patients from a surprise out-of-network billing situation and help with better coordination of care. As a physician, I try to ensure my patients’ experience with medicine is the best possible for them and their families. This legislation would be a helpful tool towards that end.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman, for allowing me to share my thoughts today.  

Last Updated On

March 25, 2019

Originally Published On

March 25, 2019

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