Nearly 100 Doctors at Memorial, Petaluma Valley Hospitals May Drop Blue Cross
About 100 doctors who practice at Memorial and Petaluma Valley Hospitals are "shunning medical contracts" with Blue Cross because they could not reach an agreement on reimbursement rates, and some are notifying their patients they may stop treating Blue Cross members after Monday, the Santa Rosa Press Democrat reports. According to the Press Democrat, officials are unsure how many Blue Cross patients will be affected by the dispute. According to Dr. Gary Greensweig, chief medical officer at Memorial Hospital, Blue Cross reimbursement rates are "historically lower" than those of other health plans and the plan has not offered increases that "doctors can accept." He said that some Blue Cross contracts offer reimbursements that are 20% lower than other plans in the area. Greensweig added, "Several [doctors] are saying no because Blue Cross is below the bar of what is sustainable." Officials from Blue Cross declined to comment but said they "still consider many contracts to be under negotiations." Blue Cross officials added that they will "find new doctors" for members whose doctors leave the plan (Rose, Santa Rosa Press Democrat, 3/28).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.