TRENTON – Sen. Shirley Turner (D-Mercer) today urged Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey and Capital Health’s Fuld Hospital to continue negotiations over reimbursement rates and other contract issues.
According to published reports, the hospital and the insurer are at an impasse in their discussions over a new contract and new reimbursement rates, putting at risk thousands of patients who are insured by Horizon and use the Fuld campus for medical care.
“Even if it means they have to meet around the clock, representatives from both sides need to sit down at the negotiating table and come up with an agreement that is satisfactory to both sides and preserves the care people are counting on without disruption,” Sen. Turner said. “Ending in-network coverage for thousands of patients would force them to find other providers that remain in the Horizon network – this is not something families with pressing medical issues should be forced to deal with.”
Sen. Turner said 3,000 of Horizon’s 3.9 million New Jersey members use Fuld Hospital for medical care. To leave them in limbo about whether their treatment at the hospital may now be treated as out-of-network care is unnecessarily punitive to those members.
“This is a dispute over reimbursement rates between the hospital and the insurance provider, but it is the patients who are going to get caught in the middle,” Sen. Turner said. “Ultimately, they will pay the price for the failure of both sides to resolve this conflict. That’s just not right. Officials of Horizon and Capital Health need to keep in mind that they are there to provide care for people at the time when they most need it, and they need to reach a fair agreement quickly so they can get on with the business of serving their patients and their members.”