Stalemate Between Nebraska Insurer, Hospital Chain

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The contract between Blue Cross Blue Shield of Nebraska and Catholic Health Initiatives is set to expire Sunday after the two sides failed Friday to agree on rates.

The failed bargaining means that starting Monday, people who visit doctors or hospitals in Nebraska associated with the Catholic Health Initiatives network will have to pay more if they have insurance from Blue Cross.

"We will work with our patients individually to ensure they can continue seeing their trusted care team, at costs as close to their in-network benefits as possible," said Dr. Cliff Robertson, the CEO of CHI Health.

Blue Cross says CHI Health, which used to be called Alegent Creighton Health, routinely charges 10 to 30 percent more than other Omaha hospitals. CHI Health says those figures are misleading and it believes its total cost of treatment is lower, even if certain services cost more.

A Blue Cross spokesman says no other negotiation meetings are scheduled this weekend before the contract is set to expire Sunday.