Blue Cross Tells Willis-Knighton Physician Network Members Their Preferred Care Coverage Is Ending
A battle is underway between Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana and Willis-Knighton Health System which could change Shreveport-Bossier residents' coverage plans.
The following letter was sent from Blue Cross regarding the Willis-Knighton Physician Network. In it, Blue Cross explains that May 15, 2014, will be final day Willis-Knighton Physician Network participates in members' Preferred Care networks. Effectively, this renders Willis-Knighton doctors as out-of-network for the Bue Cross and Blue Shield Service Benefit Plan.
Many Blue Cross Blue Shield customers are quite upset about this move and suspect this is a ploy to renegotiate the contract.
Willis-Knighton Health System has issued a statement regarding the possible changes:
Willis-Knighton and Blue Cross are in active dialogue regarding renewal of the agreement to provide care for members in our market. Blue Cross and Blue Shield payments are well below market rates. These payments are not sufficient to cover the inflationary costs and technological advances required to provide the best care to patients in WK’s hospitals, physician offices, as well as ancillary and outpatient care sites throughout Northwest Louisiana. Our 450 multispecialty providers value their relationship with their patients, and we hope that Blue Cross will continue to allow its members to receive the highest quality of care from physicians they know and trust.
John Maginnis, a spokesperson for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana, issued the following statement:
The Willis-Knighton Health System has notified Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana that they plan to withdraw their physicians from our networks and cancel our contract with their doctors on May 15. We are continuing to talk with Willis-Knighton System officials in hopes of reaching an agreement that will be fair to our customers and to the people of Shreveport. We sincerely hope they will work with us to come to an agreement that will hold down the cost of healthcare while improving quality in the Shreveport area and provide uninterrupted access to quality healthcare.
KEEL received a call from a Willis-Knighton employee who wished to remain anonymous. She told us this is just a scare tactic insurance companies use as contract negotiations continue.
Listen to what she had to say: