BCBSTN is demanding unsustainable payment cuts.
BCBSTN wants us to dramatically cut the rates at which they pay us for our anesthesia services. We cannot possibly absorb the cuts they want, and we are trying to work with them to reach a fair compromise. Unfortunately, BCBSTN has yet to share the same commitment.
Throughout this negotiation process, BCBSTN has claimed that we are 2-3X more expensive than other anesthesia groups in the area. Not only is that simply not true, Blue Cross leadership has since admitted this claim is inaccurate.
BCBSTN is also ignoring the fact that the cost of living in Nashville is more expensive for our physicians, CRNAs, and staff than in other more rural areas and smaller communities. The Tennessean just reported that Nashville housing prices are 89% higher than 2012. In addition, we have experienced a significant increase in labor costs.
We know BCBSTN is trying to lower the cost of healthcare, and we are doing our part to help with access and state of the art quality initiatives which reduce anesthesia related complications and costs. However, forcing AMG out-of-network by demanding impossible rate cuts doesn’t help with access or affordability – this action by BCBSTN creates unneeded financial anxiety for patients during their times of healthcare need.
This act merely shifts more financial responsibility onto patients and financially benefits BCBSTN. The rate cuts they are offering are simply not sustainable for AMG, or any other group, and we cannot accept a contract that puts our ability to care for our patients, and our relationships with our healthcare partners at risk.
Our commitment to you.
We are committed to reaching a new agreement that protects our patients’ in-network access to care, and continues to strengthen our relationships with all the hospitals, physicians, and patients who count on us for high-quality anesthesia services. We are negotiating in good faith with BCBSTN, but we have yet to receive a proposal that we can accept, and the rate cuts they are suggesting are simply not sustainable. We are merely asking BCBSTN to consider a contract that recognizes the normal costs of doing business and the evolving healthcare landscape.
We have successfully renewed contracts with every other commercial payor over the past 24 months, and we need BCBSTN to follow suit. AMG has had a standing relationship with BCBSTN for many years, and we do not believe that either of us wants to jeopardize that now. Thousands of people count on us for the best care, and they want that care in-network as part of their covered health benefits, just the way we have always operated.