Anthem and Hartford HealthCare reach contract agreement

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HARTFORD – Hartford HealthCare and Anthem insurance have finally reached an agreement.

The three-year agreement was announced after 2 a.m. Saturday morning.  It will restore in-network access to Hartford HealthCare`s physicians, facilities, programs and services.

Since October 1st, when the two companies failed to reach a new agreement, 60,000 patients began paying “out-of-network” prices for their regular doctor care.  But the contract is retroactive to October 1st, so those  patients should only end up paying what they would have paid as if Hartford Healthcare had been in network all along.

The six-week standoff had prompted calls for action from the state’s comptroller, and prompted a planned public hearing from the state legislature.

In a press release announcing the agreement, Hartford Healthcare’s president said “We deeply understand and regret the inconvenience and disruption that being out of network has caused our patients and communities . . . I speak for all my colleagues at Hartford HealthCare in thanking our patients for their understanding during this difficult time.”

Anthem’s president had similar sentiments, saying  “Our members remained our number one priority as we worked hard and in good faith to find common ground and reach agreement . . . . We are happy that the end result is a fair agreement with sustainable increases and additional incentives that reward HHC hospitals for improvement in patient safety. We look forward to working closely with HHC to minimize any further disruption and ensure quality affordable healthcare for our members.”