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Major Chicago Hospitals Not In 2017 Obamacare Marketplace Plans

Some of Chicago’s largest hospitals said they will not be part of any Cook County Affordable Care Act marketplace plans in 2017.

University of Chicago Medical Center and Rush University Medical Center both said they don’t plan to be in network for any Obamacare marketplace plans next year. 

The change means patients with doctors at those hospitals will either need to find a plan off the marketplace, and lose Obamacare subsides, or find a new doctor.

Northwestern Memorial Hospital said it will also be out of the marketplace, but will have exceptions for some of its partner hospitals.

Suburban hospitals in the Northwestern system, like Delnor-Community Hospital in Geneva and Northwestern Medicine Central DuPage Hospital, will be in network for some plans. Patients with a primary care doctor at one of those locations will be able to access specialist throughout the entire Northwestern system, according to a Northwestern spokesman. 

Alexandra Eidenberg, who runs The Insurance People, an agency that helps people find plans, said it’s “alarming because the vast majority of people, especially people who are sick, pregnant and in need of benefits truly need those leading hospitals.”

Advocate Health and Northshore said they both plan to participate in network for some plans offered by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois. 

Plans have not yet been approved by the federal government and could be tweaked in the next few weeks. Open Enrollment starts Nov. 1.

Shannon Heffernan is a reporter for WBEZ. Follow her @shannon_h.

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