Medicare Advantage plans are a bargaining chip in negotiations between hospitals and insurers

In their negotiations with health insurers, hospital systems have found a new tactic: removing themselves from the networks of Medicare Advantage plans.

Medicare Advantage is the program via which beneficiaries receive their Medicare benefits through private insurance plans.

The tactic is widespread. Beginning in 2024, San Diego-based Scripps Health no longer accepts any MA plans at its hospitals or physician clinics. Other health systems have focused on specific insurers. St. Charles Health System in Oregon no longer accepts MA plans from HealthNet, Humana, and WellCare. Baptist Health in Kentucky, Vanderbilt University Medical System in Tennessee, and Memorial Hermann Health System in Texas have also dropped the MA plan with Humana. Baptist has also dumped such plans from United HealthCare and WellCare, while Bon Secours in Virginia has dropped Anthem Blue Cross.

“We frequently hear from hospitals and health systems
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