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GOP calls Shaheen letter a ‘stunt’

January 29. 2014 11:23PM

Citing concern over a lack of a “robust provider network,” U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen on Wednesday urged the federal government to examine adequacy standards and take steps to provide more information to consumers about health network plans in New Hampshire.

Only Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield is currently providing health insurance in New Hampshire under the Affordable Care Act.

“That issuer has eliminated ten of the state’s 26 hospitals from its provider network for all plans issued through the marketplace, including in the multi-state program plan,” Shaheen, D-NH, wrote in a letter to U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. “As a result, I have heard from consumers who have been left without access to the provider with whom they had built a long-standing relationship.”

The Republican State Committee called Shaheen’s letter a “stunt.” State GOP Chairwoman Jennifer Horn said Shaheen shares the blame for the problems with the federal health care program.

“Once again, Senator Jeanne Shaheen is trying to distract from her blind support for the President’s failed policies and her deciding vote for ObamaCare with another desperate election-year stunt,” Horn said in a statement. “Senator Shaheen is directly responsible for imposing this terrible law on New Hampshire and forcing thousands of her constituents to give up their doctors and lose their health insurance.”

Shaheen, in the letter, noted that the Affordable Care Act gives Sebelius authority to establish criteria for certification of health plans and for sufficient choice of providers.

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