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WOONSOCKET â€“ Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Rhode Island and Landmark Medical Center have reached an agreement to extend their existing reimbursement contract, ending the threat that the health insurerâ€™s members would not be covered for services rendered at the hospital.
Provided the pact is approved by the Superior Court â€“ a hearing is scheduled for Wednesday â€“ Blue Cross will honor the terms of its existing reimbursement agreement with Landmark until Dec. 31, or 90 days after Steward Health Care purchases the hospital, whichever comes first.
The agreement, retroactive to the expiration of Landmarkâ€™s last contract with Blue Cross on July 17, marks the end of a rancorous and highly public feud between Landmark and Blue Cross over reimbursement rates.
Bill Fischer, a spokesman for Landmark, said the most tangible effect of the agreement is that is relieves Blue Cross members from the northern Rhode Island area of any worries about being covered for medical treatment they receive at Landmark.
Itâ€™s unclear, however, whether the agreement makes it any more or less likely that Steward will close on the sale of the hospital. The deal doesnâ€™t improve rates, which Steward, like Landmark, had also criticized as unfairly low in comparison to other hospitals.
Read more in our print edition.