No one likes having to navigate their health coverage for a visit to a specialist. Medical specialists can be few and far between, and finding ones nearby within your coverage isn't always feasible.
However, recent changes in insurance regulation are prompting a change in this pattern and causing an increasing focus on sending patients to local specialists, instead of requiring them to take day trip or pay a visit to another state.
In short, more insurance companies are finding it more cost-effective to send their customers to local specialists when possible. It's growing more affordable to send a Maryland resident to a Maryland gastroenterologist than requiring them to cross the state border to see one in Delaware. Working locally keeps administrative costs lower and new regulations on administrative budgeting is demanding adaptation within the market.
This is largely good news for individuals that have been unable to see specialists due to an inability to travel. It will make visiting specialists a more convenient process in the future as well, as it will require far less overhead to make it possible.
Whereas a visit to a specialist once required family support to manage transportation to and from the appointment, to say nothing of travel time and transportation costs, it will now be feasible for the busy or aging to accomplish this on their own. While the conditions that have induced this quiet, easy-to-miss trend may be difficult to cope with in the long term, they should at least provide this convenience to insurance customers for some time to come.