Leah Selby Gray

Volume 70, Issue 6, 1639-1666

The American health care system is far from ideal. Health insurance is expensive, yet often inadequate, and patients can fall into bankruptcy paying for necessary medical care. Patients often face challenges finding physicians and other providers that accept their insurance due to network inadequacy, which can end up costing them thousands. Federal law offers few protections to patients from the costs of inadequate networks, so some states have passed legislation to protect patients from surprise balance bills. This Note analyzes the enduring nature of the network inadequacy problem and proposes an elegant solution: state single payer. While it would be politically and administratively challenging, a state single payer system would be the most efficient solution to inadequate networks and surprise balance billing.