Bon Secours, Anthem in Virginia reach agreement

Published 11:54 am Monday, October 2, 2023

Bon Secours and Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Virginia have reached a multi-year agreement providing Anthem members with continued access to affordable, high-quality care at all Bon Secours hospitals, outpatient care centers and physician offices. 

A Friday, Sept. 29, news release noted that as a result, all Anthem Medicare Advantage and Medicaid health plan members will have continued in-network coverage at Bon Secours. Anthem has agreed to cover any claims that patients may have incurred during the period of time that Bon Secours was out of network with Anthem Medicare Advantage since Aug. 1. 

The agreement also extends coverage for Anthem employer-based and Affordable Care Act plans. With the new contract, Anthem members covered by these plans will have access to affordable coverage at Bon Secours until 2028.

This agreement between Bon Secours and Anthem in Virginia follows a heated period of negotiations that extended nearly two months beyond the Aug. 1 deadline for maintaining uninterrupted in-network coverage. As Virginia Mercury’s Sarah Vogelsong reported amid the impasse between parties, Bon Secours Mercy Health’s Virginia operations filed a lawsuit against Anthem BCBS, complaining that Anthem had adopted “slow pay and no-pay tactics” in Virginia to avoid reimbursing the system more than $73 million for services in a timely fashion and improperly deny it more than $20 million in reimbursements.

This lawsuit followed strongly worded news releases from both organizations addressing each other in July, but in the wake of the new agreement, representatives struck a positive tone in the Sept. 29 release.

“I’m proud that both organizations continued to focus on our shared priority: the communities we serve,” said Anthem Virginia President Monica Schmude. “We worked together to creatively address affordability for our members and the financial needs of an important care provider. This agreement provides long-term stable access to care at Bon Secours without cost increases for our members and employers.”

Bon Secours Hampton Roads President Pat Davis-Hagens said, “We understand that being out of network/potentially being out of network can be very difficult, and we are pleased that patients with Anthem insurance can now see our physicians and use our hospitals at an in-network cost. We sincerely believe that access to quality health care services is vital for our communities. This new agreement protects our patients’ access to compassionate care close to home.”

The release noted that details of the agreement are not being released due to confidentiality provisions in the contract. As part of the agreement, Bon Secours has agreed to dismiss the Virginia lawsuit as the organizations form collaborative teams to address claims submissions and payment processes.

Anthem members may contact the Member Service phone number on their Anthem ID card for assistance with any questions. Bon Secours patients may also call 888-354-0205 for more information.