U of Mississippi Medical Center, BCBS agree on mediator 

Mississippi's largest provider and payer have agreed on a mediator to oversee their contract dispute, Mississippi Today reported May 9. 

Jackson-based University of Mississippi Medical Center has been out of network with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Mississippi since April 1.  

Walter Johnson, senior counsel at the law firm Watkins & Eager, will be the mediator, according to the report. Mr. Johnson has mediated hundreds of cases in Mississippi and elsewhere since 1994. 

Mississippi Deputy Commissioner of Insurance Mark Haire told Mississippi Today the department is hopeful that the payer and provider can make significant progress, if not find a resolution, by early June. 

In the last 18 months, more than 50,000 patients with a qualifying BCBS plan received care at a UMMC facility, a UMMC spokesperson told Becker's in March. 

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