Moving toward narrower networks is a growing trend that was ultimately accelerated with the birth of Obamacare. Limiting the physicians that were available to their customers has been used as a way to control costs. Plan subscribers would still have access to a physician of their choice that is not in their network, but it would be more costly for the patient rather than the insurance company.
There has been a growing concern that the reduction of physician networks have resulted in a very limited selection, especially when it comes to certain specialties. According to an article published on Fierce Health Payer, a study reported that up to 14 percent of health plans in the federal marketplace did not have a physician in-network for at least one common specialty.