Biweekly Briefing Articles

CHA Analysis Reveals How Insurer Practices Impede Patient Care

The California Hospital Association (CHA) has developed a detailed analysis of how insurance company practices negatively affect patients. It’s a key proof point supporting a comprehensive strategy to hold insurers accountable for patient care in California. One of CHA’s priorities this year is to create greater accountability (network adequacy, prior authorization, medical necessity, payment practices, parity) for insurers operating in California. The survey, conducted by CHA in 2023, saw significant response from California hospitals (many thanks to all who contributed). Broadly, the analysis reveals: 

  • Four out of five California hospitals identify delays or denials of authorization as one of the top insurance policies that delay discharges.
  • An estimated 4,500 patients every day remain in California hospitals and emergency rooms despite being medically cleared for discharge. This affects those in managed care plans at higher rates than those in fee-for-service plans.
  • Annually, hospitals provide an estimated 1 million days of excess inpatient care due to discharge delays and 7.5 million hours of excess emergency department care. This directly contributes to at least $3.25 billion in avoidable boarding costs. 

With questions about this analysis or CHA’s ongoing work to create greater insurer accountability, contact Patricia Blaisdell, CHA vice president, policy, at