Oakland, Calif.-based Kaiser Permanente says the 30 percent price hike Salem (Ore.) Health is seeking for Kaiser insurance members in the Salem market is too steep. Salem Health argues the increase is justified, according to The Lund Report.
Kaiser and Salem Health last negotiated their agreement seven years ago. Salem Health says it’s seeking a steep increase because prices under the current agreement lag the market by 30 percent.
“Over the past year, Salem Health has consistently communicated with Kaiser the need for a new, market-based contract,” Salem Health said in a statement to The Lund Report.
The old contract expired two weeks ago, and talks between Kaiser and Salem Health are at a stalemate. Kaiser says the price hike is unreasonable and excessive.
“These overinflated prices are unnecessary, and they are not the direction we want to be going regionally and nationally,” Caroline King, MD, a physician leader at Kaiser in Salem, told The Lund Report. “And so if we feel there is a player in the market that is doing this, it is for us to speak up.”
Any agreement entered into between the organizations will affect the healthcare costs of about 40,000 Kaiser insurance members in the Salem market, according to the report.