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News Release
Legacy Health takes action to ensure Regence BlueCross BlueShield members have access to quality, financially sustainable care close to home - 02/06/24

Legacy Health takes action to ensure Regence BlueCross BlueShield members have access to quality, financially sustainable care close to home 

Legacy seeks fair, reasonable and competitive increase in reimbursement. 

Portland, Ore. (Feb. 6, 2024) — Legacy Health recently issued a notice of contract termination with Regence BlueCross BlueShield in effort to secure a fair, reasonable and competitive increase in reimbursement for care. If discussions reach an impasse, Legacy’s contracts with Regence will terminate on March 31, 2024.

Contracts between healthcare providers and insurance companies set the reimbursement for how much insurance companies pay for their members’ care. Given the rapid growth in labor costs and inflation over the last two years, Legacy informed Regence 10 months ago that they should expect a significant rate increase in our next contract. This contract renewal applies to all Legacy hospitals and clinics, excluding Silverton hospital and clinics that have a separate agreement in place.

“Legacy Health cares for Regence members who deserve to receive quality and financially sustainable care close to home,” said Merrin Permut, Legacy Vice President and Chief Population Health Officer. “Regence has been an essential partner for decades, and we remain hopeful. We’re asking Regence to support an increase that reflects the economic realities in health care today so that all of us can focus on our top priority — the well-being of their members and our patients.”

Regence’s reimbursement has failed to keep pace with the rising expenses that healthcare systems across the country are experiencing as they struggle to recover financially after the COVID-19 pandemic. Legacy’s expenses rose by 24% in just two years, driven by inflation and rising costs for supplies and labor. Regence’s recent strong financial performance and its stable financial foundation makes them well positioned to support care provided at hospitals and clinics with sustainable rates.
 

“We are seeking reimbursement that is competitive with other health systems in the Portland region and reflects the value and actual cost of care we provide to patients in our communities,” Permut said. “Unfortunately, Regence has not agreed to our current proposal and is not adhering to the timelines they set forth. We are concerned for Regence members who face further anxiety about the potential for disruption of services and reduced access to care.”

The notice of termination allows both parties to continue negotiations for another three months without the Legacy-Regence contract automatically renewing with the old financial terms. If the two sides do not reach a new agreement on or before March 31, 2024, Legacy will no longer be in-network for Regence members, except for emergency care.

Patients can stay informed about our progress by visiting our website at LegacyHealth.org/RegenceContract

 

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About Legacy Health
Legacy Health is a local nonprofit health system driven by our mission to improve the health of those around us. We offer a unique blend of health services – from wellness and urgent care to dedicated children's care and advanced medical centers – to care for patients of all ages when and where they need us across the Portland/Vancouver metro area and mid-Willamette Valley. With an eye toward a healthier community, our partnerships tackle vital issues such as housing and mental health. Legacy strives to help everyone live healthier and better lives, with the vision of being essential to the health of the region.

 

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