Sarasota Memorial Hospital, Florida Blue reach contract impasse

Sarasota (Fla.) Memorial Hospital and Florida Blue have yet to reach an in-network agreement as a March 31 termination deadline looms, the Herald-Tribune reports.

If a new contract isn't signed by then, the health system and its First Physicians Group will be out of network with Florida Blue April 1.

"Although we have made progress, fewer than 30 days remain until our current contract expires on March 31," according to a statement on the hospital's website. "There are two key negotiation hurdles that are critical to the long-term success of our relationship with BCBS. First, BCBS pays less than every other major insurance carrier for the same services. BCBS recognizes that and has taken steps toward solving the problem — but more work is necessary to ensure their reimbursement rates are competitive and comparable to other insurance companies."

On March 6, a Sarasota Memorial spokesperson told the Herald-Tribune hospital leaders remain "optimistic" the contract impasse will resolve before the end of March.

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