November 18, 2017

Anthem-Hartford HealthCare reach 3-year deal

Greg Bordonaro
Greg Bordonaro
Hartford Hospital, which is Hartford HealthCare's flagship

After a month and a half of acrimonious contract negotiations that led to calls for possible legislative intervention, Hartford HealthCare and Anthem announced a new three-year deal Saturday morning.

Financial terms were not disclosed but the agreement means Hartford HealthCare patients with Anthem insurance will once again be able to pay in-network rates for care at Hartford HealthCare facilities.

The contract is also retroactive to Oct. 1, which is when Anthem's-Hartford HealthCare's previous deal expired. That means patients who received out-of-network care from Hartford HealthCare since Oct. 1 will pay what they would have paid as if Hartford HealthCare had been in network all along.

"We deeply understand and regret the inconvenience and disruption that being out of network has caused our patients and communities," said Jeffrey Flaks, Hartford HealthCare's president and chief operating officer. "Everything we do is aimed at creating more access to exceptional services. I speak for all my colleagues at Hartford HealthCare in thanking our patients for their understanding during this difficult time."

In a separate statement, Anthem President Jill R. Hummel said:

"Anthem recognizes the disruption caused by the negotiations and the significant impact it had on HHC patients and Anthem members. Our members remained our number one priority as we worked hard and in good faith to find common ground and reach agreement. We are very pleased that they are immediately regaining in-network access to all of the hospitals and providers that are a part of the Hartford HealthCare system."

The deal was announced in the wake of threats from top state Democratic legislative leaders to introduce legislation in a special session that would require hospitals and health insurers to go to binding arbitration to help resolve disputes.

The previous contract between HHC and Anthem expired Oct. 1. As a result, Hartford HealthCare patients who have Anthem insurance coverage were forced to pay higher, out-of-network rates for most care at a Hartford HealthCare facility. HHC owns a number of hospitals including Hartford Hospital, The Hospital of Central Connecticut and MidState Hospital, among others.

Under the new deal, patients who received care prior to the new deal will be charged in-network rates.

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