PHOENIX, Dec. 3, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The local, independent, nonprofit insurer, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona (BCBSAZ) announced today that unless an agreement can be reached before Dec. 31, 2015, Carondelet Health Network in Pima County will no longer be part of the BCBSAZ network. This is a result of Carondelet asking for an unreasonably large increase in how much they are paid for hospital services. The amount asked for would make it even harder for Arizona families to afford care and coverage. The network change would take effect Jan. 1, 2016.
BCBSAZ continues to have one of the largest networks in Arizona with access to in-network services at six other hospitals, 20 urgent care centers and 16 freestanding facilities in Pima County. BCBSAZ will be working closely with physicians and our members during this transition. For members who have questions, they should call the number on the back of their BCBSAZ insurance ID card.
Members look to BCBSAZ to secure the best possible pricing for their families. By negotiating what hospitals and physicians charge for services, members can get care at more reasonable costs than they would without BCBSAZ working on their behalf. For example, if BCBSAZ agreed to the current rate hike proposed by Carondelet Health Network, the cost of a hysterectomy would increase from $8,400 to more than $12,000, an increase of nearly 45 percent.
In 2014, Tenet Healthcare Corp. became the controlling entity of Abrazo Health Care, and more recently, in 2015, also purchased a majority stake in Carondelet Health. Tenet is a for-profit, shareholder-driven company headquartered in Dallas, Texas.
This trend of consolidation is increasing at a rapid rate in Arizona and nationwide, and often has adverse effects – reducing competition and giving providers unprecedented pricing power to boost costs and profits. BCBSAZ's priority is to increase the value of care, not the cost of it.
To understand more about how these industry trends are affecting healthcare costs and what BCBSAZ is doing to minimize the impact on Arizonans, visit inyourcornerAZ.org.
About Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona (BCBSAZ), an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, is a nonprofit company founded in 1939. BCBSAZ provides health insurance products, services or networks to 1.4 million individuals. With offices in Phoenix, Flagstaff, Tucson and the East Valley, the company employs more than 1,400 Arizonans. Follow BCBSAZ at www.facebook.com/bcbsaz or on Twitter at @bcbsaz.
SOURCE Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona