Representatives from Northwest Health System in Springdale and Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield resumed negotiations on Wednesday, according to an NHS news release.
The two entities have been squabbling over proposed rate increases, among other things, and previously set Aug. 31 as a termination date for their contract. According to the release, the existing contract between NHS and BCBS now will continue without interruption.
“Today’s developments make us optimistic that continued dialogue with BCBS will be both collaborative and productive,” NHS CEO Dan McKay said in the release. “In the meantime, the many patients, community members and local employers who rely on Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield for their health care coverage can have peace of mind knowing their insurance plans will continue to include the local hospitals and physicians they know and trust with their medical care.”
NHS is one of eight hospitals and a host of clinics in Arkansas owned by Tennessee-based Community Health Systems. As discussions between NHS and ABCBS continue, the release said, the hospital and its affiliated physicians will continue to participate as “in-network” providers in ABCBS insurance plans. ABCBS members will experience no change in fees or in the way they interact with either the NHS or the health plan, the release further stated.