10 Sep 2014

Stanford Health terminates contract with Anthem Blue Cross

10 Sep 2014

KQED has a good summary of the contractual dispute and how it will affect patients at Stanford Hospital and its affiliates.

James Larkin, spokesman for Stanford, said patients should not worry. “While our contract did expire last night,” Larkin said in an email, “I want to reiterate that Stanford Health Care will continue to welcome Anthem members and honor Anthem¹s in-network co-payment amounts for all of our services and care.”

But Larkin would not say whether Stanford would pick up the costs that had been covered by Anthem.

Darrel Ng, spokesman for Anthem, said that Anthem patients are potentially eligible for chargemaster rates — essentially the list price, usually multiples higher than what insurers pay to providers.

The San Jose Mercury News and San Francisco Business Times also cover the story.

Whether Anthem and Stanford are both simply posturing and attempting to influence further contract negotiations (and this is likely the case), it is important to remember that the consumer-patient ultimately is the one financially responsible for payment of services rendered.  We strongly recommend that all Anthem policyholders that use Stanford, review the FAQ’s published by Anthem, so that they can know what to expect from the insurance carrier in terms of financial responsibility and payment.

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