Legislation May Bring Valley Regional Hospital into Anthem Network

peter wright

(L-R) Valley Regional’s CEO Peter Right, Trustee Michael Fuerst, Rep. Andy Schmidt, D-Grantham, and Senator David Pierce, D-Enfield

During last night’s special meeting with the Sullivan County Delegation Senator David Pierce announced he is working on a bill with Senator Bob O’Dell concerning the narrow network designed by Anthem. The Bill would change assignments for health networks. Currently they are governed by NH State Rule 2701.06, which says that if 90 percent of the people live within 45 miles and 60 minutes away from a medical care facility they are covered. This leaves Sullivan County without a hospital in the network and many patients giving up their long time trusted physicians. Peter Wright CEO of Valley Regional said that many of their patients already have difficulties getting to their hospital now even though they only live 5 miles away. Wright fears this would leave patients not getting the care they need especially if they are sick and it is bad weather. Sullivan County and Coos County are the only two counties in the NH with no network hospitals and both rank the two unhealthiest counties in the State according to the University of Wisconsin, Population Health Institute. You can see the survey here.

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