Tennova hospitals out of network with UnitedHealthcare, but physicians still in

Hospitals of Knoxville, Tenn.-based Tennova Healthcare are no longer in UnitedHealthcare's provider network. However, Tennova physicians are still in the insurer's network, causing confusion for patients, according to the Knoxville News Sentinel.

Five things to know:

1. As of March 1, Tennova confirmed five of its hospitals were out of network with UnitedHealthcare, the insurance arm of UnitedHealth Group. UnitedHealthcare is one of Tennessee's largest Medicare Advantage insurers.

2. The hospitals must still provide emergency care to UnitedHealthcare policyholders, and the change does not affect the insurer's Dual Special Needs Plans.

3. Tennova said March 1 that it has been negotiating with UnitedHealthcare since February 2018. A spokesperson for the hospital system told the Knoxville News Sentinel that "accepting the rates United has proposed would threaten the long-term viability of our hospitals."

4. UnitedHealthcare blamed Tennova and its parent company, Franklin, Tenn.-based Community Health Systems, for the dispute. A UnitedHealthcare spokesperson told the publication that the hospital systems "insisted on rate increases of nearly 20 percent over two years that would have made the average cost of care at its hospitals more expensive than all other hospitals in our network in the Knoxville market."

5. Still, both Tennova and UnitedHealthcare said they remain "committed" to striking a new contract for patients, according to the report.

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