St. Petersburg Times, December 4, 2008

Aetna, health insurer to about 300,000 people in the Tampa Bay, FL, area, has notified several employers that BayCare Health System hospitals may drop out of its network as of January. Aetna spokesman Walt Cherniak said he was optimistic that the two sides will cut a deal before Jan. 1, avoiding any interruption of service. But Isaac Mallah, a BayCare executive who negotiates managed-care contracts, said Aetna is asking for payment rates below the market rate for other large insurers, such as BlueCross BlueShield of Florida and UnitedHealthcare.

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