Anthem Blue Cross Reaches Agreement With BJC Healthcare

7 years 11 months 20 hours ago Thursday, December 16 2010 Dec 16, 2010 Thursday, December 16, 2010 9:37:58 AM CST December 16, 2010 in News
COLUMBIA - Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Officials finished negotiations Wednesday and reached an agreement with BJC HealthCare.  That means patients who use Boone Hospital Center will continue to be able to use their Anthem insurance.

The insurance company sent a letter out to its members last week letting them know if an agreement wasn't reached, Boone Medical Center will be out of its network, beginning on January 1, 2011.

Before the agreement Wednesday, many Anthem insurance holders were concerned about their coverage. Stephanie Arends has always used Boone Medical Center. Arends said her family didn't have the option to switch insurance carriers because they receive insurance through her husband's job.

She also said her family couldn't just try to find a different provider due to her husband's health issues.

"My husband has health issues," Arends said. "So it's not really feasible for us to just go find another insurance. He has a pre-existing condition."

Deeana Perera said she and her husband could have changed providers in order to remain with the doctors they trust at Boone. They receive benefits from his previous work with the federal government.

They had a window of just more than a month to decide to change. The only problem is that she received the letter on Saturday, and couldn't get enough information about other carriers in time to switch by a December 13 deadline.

She said she's been with the same doctor since she was involved in a serious car accident a little more than a year ago, and has grown to trust that doctor.

"He's been taking care of me," she said. "Even before the accident he was taking care of me. So, naturally, I want to stay."


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