HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Tens of thousands of Memorial Hermann patients may need to find care elsewhere or pay a lot more.
After months of negotiations, Memorial Hermann Hospital and BlueCross BlueShield of Texas (BCBSTX) were unable to reach an agreement in time, according to a release from the hospital.
As a result, on March 1, the insurance company has dropped Memorial Hermann from its network. This means that more than 265 of Memorial Hermann's hospitals, surgery centers, and care delivery sites may no longer be in your network.
"While we've done everything in our power to work with BCBSTX to ensure our patients can continue to access Memorial Hermann facilities and physicians for care, BCBSTX's decision to force us out-of-network puts patients at risk of experiencing significant disruption," a statement from Memorial Hermann read. "This isn't right, and Memorial Hermann will continue to do everything we can to reach an agreement that brings all of these critical resources back in-network so you get the trusted care you need."
BCBSTX released the following statement, explaining the situation and what the next steps would be for clients:
We were hopeful throughout the negotiations that we would reach a mutually beneficial agreement, and despite the termination will continue to work towards an agreement. We have great respect for Memorial Hermann as an organization, but we continue to focus on what is best for our members and customers.
Some Memorial Hermann physicians and healthcare professionals have chosen to contract separately to remain in BCBSTX's networks. For members whose providers have not chosen to contract directly with BCBSTX, we are making every effort to make sure members are moved to in-network doctors, hospitals, and surgery centers as seamlessly as possible. We are also working with in-network hospitals to speed up granting privileges to doctors who only have privileges at Memorial Hermann so they can continue to care for our members.
Here are the steps BCBSTX members should take to find, in-network doctors and providers:
- Call the Customer Service number on your member ID card
- Search our Provider Finder.
- For personalized search results based on your health plan and network, register or log in to Blue Access for MembersSM.
- In the case of a life-threatening illness or injury, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency facility right away.