Georgia ruling favors doctors in dispute with insurer

State Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine

State Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine says Blue Cross Blue Shield Healthcare Plan of Georgia violated the law by refusing to allow Athens' Northeast Georgia Cancer Care to participate in certain company plans.

Georgia's Any Willing Provider law gives doctors and health care providers licensed in Georgia and in good standing the right to participate in insurance company networks.

Oxendine said in his ruling Wednesday that consumers want more doctors in their networks, and said he believes that's the intent of the law.

Dr. Mark Vrana, Cancer Care's managing partner, says the ruling means doctors will be able to refer patients to the doctors they think can best help them.

The company said in a statement that the ruling goes too far and singles out Blue Cross Blue Shield.

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