by Stephanie Crosby
Humana and the University of Louisville Physicians group have failed to sign a new contract, and their previous deal expired at midnight.
The doctors’ group says the insurer wants to cut its reimbursement rates by ten-percent and is seeking a ten-percent increase. The physicians says they deserve the raise because they are a group of academic and research-based doctors.
Humana spokesperson Jim Turner says the insurer has tried to treat them as such.
“We at Humana do recognize the U-of-L doctors as an academic medical center,” says Turner. “We provided substantial pay increases to the U-of-L doctors, Humana did, in 2008 and again in 2009, and Humana currently pays the U-of-L doctors rates that are much higher than the Louisville market average.”
But the U-of-L Physicians Group says the rates have to be similar or higher than those in comparable cities with academic medical centers, in order to recruit the best doctors to Louisville.
While no contract exists between the two, patients have the option of seeing another doctor, or paying out-of-network costs for their doctor.
The two groups had a similar coverage gap in 2008 that lasted six months.