The not-for-profit Sutter Health network announced today that it reached agreement on a new two-year contract with Blue Shield of California, preserving patient access to the doctors and care centers that Blue Shield sold to patients during fall open enrollment. The contract applies to all Blue Shield products in which Sutter Health providers historically participated, including HMO, PPO and those offered through Covered California. There will be no lapse in coverage for Sutter Health patients.
“We sincerely regret the frustration our patients experienced as the negotiations took longer than necessary—especially when the final agreement is extremely close to the reasonable offer we made to Blue Shield several months ago,” said Sutter Health Chief Medical Officer Steve Lockhart, M.D., Ph.D.
“We take seriously our role in helping control rising health care costs, and the contract we reached with Blue Shield reflects our significant progress.”
Through its work to make high-quality services more affordable to patients, Sutter Health has reduced costs more than $300 million in the past few years.
“We’re very pleased to reach a fair and reasonable agreement that preserves patient access to our award-winning doctors and hospitals that Blue Shield promised its members during fall open enrollment—and also safeguards our ability to continue meeting patient and community commitments,” Lockhart said.