Carondelet Health Network and Abrazo Community Health Network consumers can breathe a sigh of relief as their health plans will stay in the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona’s network this year, BCBSAZ said recently in Phoenix.
Tense negotiations concluded with a new four-year deal accepted by the two plans’ parent organization, Tenet Healthcare, just one day before the Dec. 31 deadline for the contract beginning Jan. 1. The resulting agreement covers all of BCBSAZ’s branches: individual, group, FEP and Medicare Advantage.
"This was an unusual situation in that it took much longer than anyone expected to reach an agreement,” BCBSAZ Senior Vice President Jeff Stelnik said. “We are pleased it keeps reimbursement increases to market norm without jeopardizing the long-term affordability for our members."
Carondelet and Abrazo participants initially were advised to prepare for care transitions when negotiations presented the possibility of contract termination.
"In the end, members can have peace of mind knowing they will continue to have the same in-network options to select from at a fair price," Stelnik said. "Quality local care is essential for a healthy community. We are pleased to have both Abrazo and Carondelet as network choices in Maricopa and southern Arizona for our members."