El Camino Health cuts ties with Anthem, follows local trend


Hospitals clash with Anthem Blue Cross over health care prices, leaving  patients in a lurch | News | Palo Alto Online |

El Camino Health severed ties with Anthem after pricing disputes forced the provider to kill its contract, making it the most recent in a cast of Bay Area systems to have troubles with the insurer, according to the Mountain View Voice.

Over the past decade, four systems, including Mountain View, Calif.-based El Camino, have had contract struggles with Anthem related to claims that the insurer is penny-pinching. 

The result is a standoff, as Anthem has claimed in the past that regional healthcare costs are too high, explaining low service payment offers. 

While Anthem provided annual payment increases, the rate El Camino requested would raise premiums and copays for businesses and families, the insurer told the Mountain View Voice. El Camino said Anthem’s terms are “well below” that of other insurers. 

El Camino and Anthem are still negotiating, which could last up to between three and six months based on previous conflicts. Meanwhile, El Camino patients without critical healthcare needs are no longer in-network with Anthem.

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